Posted by: Jo | March 20, 2015

Give Me A Hearing Heart

“My dear brothers, take note of this; Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.”

(James 1:19)

image Some years back I remember reading about a New Yorker who moved in the rich and famous circle and was frequently invited to their numerous cocktail parties. He became bored with the meaningless chatter which was a part of every gathering, and to amuse himself he played a game in which he tried to see who actually listened to what he was saying. When he was asked, “How are you?” He would answer, “Oh everything is wonderful” and then as an afterthought would add. “My grandmother was murdered last week.” Time and time again people would smile and move on as though the last sentence had never been spoken. They hadn’t bothered to really listen to what he was saying.

The art of listening seems to be rapidly fading in our own society today. People nowadays communicate using electronic devices, leaving Facebook messages for friends, or texting those same friends with abbreviated symbols, or brief e-mails. Telephoning any big companies for advice on problems can be a frustrating experience in which one argues with an automated voice which sometimes doesn’t sound like it is human. We have read tragic stories lately in the media about teenagers taking their own lives because they had nobody with whom they could share their problems. We all need to hone and sharpen our listening skills.

The book of Proverbs is a wonderful source of how to live our lives in such a way, that we practice loving one another and in so doing please Our Heavenly Father. Listen to this good advice;

“He who answers before listening- that is his folly and shame.” (Proverbs 18:13)

And who of us have not experienced this type of conversation;

“A fool finds no pleasure in understanding but delights in airing his own opinions” (Proverbs 18:2)

One of the saddest verses in Scripture about listening, is when Job is going through all his troubles and he calls out these words;

“Oh, that I had someone to hear me!” (Job 31:35)

image Job did have somebody to hear him, his Heavenly Father, but he needed desperately a friend who would hear his outpourings with love and understanding, and allow him to share his thoughts without judging him.

So many lonely people, still today, utter that same cry as Job. The elderly who are shut in. The young mother struggling with that new baby. The family who have just moved into the neighbourhood. The new boy at school. The recently widowed man. The teenager beset with all the angst of growing up. A new migrant striving to fit in into a new country. Sometimes the person most needing an attentive ear is within our own family or one of our close friends.

I was reading a beautiful message about listening just recently and came across this very meaningful phrase

DEVELOP A HEARING HEART

This really spoke to me as I realised that too often we hear with our ears, but our hearts are not involved, so we miss the sadness, fear, worry behind the words. We can desire to develop this sensitive heart just by asking our Heavenly Father and then be able to answer the cry, “O, that I had someone to hear me.”

“Create in me a pure heart, O’ God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” (Psalm 51:10)

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Responses

  1. Thanks, Jo – wonderful thought – I’d say keep that one on your list to find additional ways to develop it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I particularly liked the last paragraph, Jo, although it is all great advice to remember. Thank you as always

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you. Jo and Mary/ I love your words of wisdom!

    Like

  4. As a grand-daughter of mine told me that is why God gave us two ears and only one mouth.. Thank you again Jo for reminding us how important it is to listen and not just hear.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. What a beautiful concept – a hearing heart! I tend to be great at offering advice – often unsolicited – but will try this week to be a good listener. Thank you again, Jo

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Really great Mum and just what I needed for this week – especially at work.

    Liked by 1 person


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