I was nominated for the 3-Day Quote Challenge by two great bloggers—thank you for that guys! One is Stu at https://stubaby777.wordpress.com and the other is Stefan at https://thefourthdimensionoflife.wordpress.com. Please take a peek at their blogs (you know you want to!😉).
The rules are as follows:
Thank the person who nominated you.
Post a quote for 3 days, and explain why it appeals to you.
Nominate bloggers each day!
This quote is from a book by Dr. Stephen R. Covey called The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. (I’m not affiliated with Amazon, so I don’t get a kick back if you click on the link)
In his book, he talks about the four main ways we communicate—reading, writing, speaking, and listening. We are taught the first three from early on, but we get very little training in how to listen.
Dr. Covey stresses empathic listening as being a key ingredient of good communication. Empathic listening is where you seek to understand where the other person is coming from, what their perception of the situation is, what perspective they’re seeing it from, where their heart is on it.
Solid relationships are built on good communication and poor communication can easily destroy a relationship.
Our Lord values relationships. We were created to be in relationship with Him. He wants us to talk to Him, but He also wants us to listen to Him, and to “hear” where He’s coming from, to understand His heart for people.
We can’t really understand where someone’s coming from until we get to know them better.
We can’t get to know them better if we can’t communicate effectively.
We can’t communicate effectively if we don’t listen.
If we don’t listen, we can’t really understand where someone’s coming from.
It’s a vicious cycle, but we can put a positive spin on it if we’d just listen with the intent to understand.
“My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.”
James 1:19 (NIV)
I’ve heard it said that’s why God gave us two ears but only one mouth 😉.
So many times in the Bible the phrase, “Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand,” and often it’s Jesus saying it when he’s talking in parables. (see Matt 11:15, 13:9 & 13:43, Mark 4:9 & 4:23 & 14:35, Luke 8:8 and 14:35 for starters)
In Matthew 13:13-15 (NLT), Jesus says,
“That is why I use these parables,
For they look, but they don’t really see.
They hear, but they don’t really listen or understand.
This fulfills the prophecy of Isaiah that says,
‘When you hear what I say,
you will not understand.
When you see what I do,
you will not comprehend.
For the hearts of these people are hardened,
and their ears cannot hear,
and they have closed their eyes—
so their eyes cannot see,
and their ears cannot hear,
and their hearts cannot understand,
and they cannot turn to me
and let me heal them.’”
In Revelation there are many verses (see Rev 2:7, 2:17, 2:29, 3:6, 3:13, 3:22, &13:9) that say, “Anyone with ears to hear must listen to the Spirit and understand what he is saying to the churches.”
We need ears to hear, yes, but we need softened hearts and willing spirits to really understand. Hardened hearts are not interested in listening, nor in understanding. A hardened heart will not be home to a willing spirit, yet we need to approach God with a willing spirit, hungry for true communion with Him, seeking to understand His heart, listening for and to the Holy Spirit.
“Seek first to understand, then seek to be understood.”
Try this principle with those you wouldn’t normally associate with—maybe you’ll show someone the love of Christ.
Try this with someone you know or suspect is hurting or struggling—maybe you’ll help pull them out of their pit of despair.
Try applying this same principle in all your relationships and see how life changes for you. It’s not easy, but it’ll be worth it.
My nominations are:
Please don’t feel obligated in any way to follow through with this challenge if you don’t want to…
©️ 2018, Mia Manumit, https://calledtobeawriter.wordpress.com