Take Time to Listen

Fans on the comic strip “Peanuts” might recall today being Beethoven’s birthday. The German composer born on this day in 1770 was heavily admired by the toy piano playing Schroeder. Beethoven is perhaps best known for his Fifth Symphony (a disco adaptation of that piece became a #1 song 40 years ago). He wrote prodigiously despite increasing deafness.

A few people suspect I have a hearing problem when I ask them to repeat something they said. Sometimes I heard them accurately the first time but want to make sure I did so. Other times it’s more of a listening problem on my part. I made the mistake of letting my mind wander while other people are speaking to me. Another bad habit we need to avoid is thinking more about how to respond to someone while they are still talking to us. Proverbs 18:2 says, “A fool has no delight in understanding, but in expressing his own heart.”

It’s often been said that God gave us two ears and only one mouth because it’s more important to listen than to talk. Sometimes evangelists need to approach sinners cautiously instead of just blasting them with the gospel. There are individuals who built up barriers in their hearts because of mistreatment by professing Christians. In those situations, we would be more effective ministering to them if we take time to listen. It reminds me of an old saying, “People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care.”

Many times I’ve heard individuals claim that God is not listening to them. The truth is the Lord is always talking to us. The question is…are we willing to quiet our minds and listen to what He’s saying? 

A brokerage firm once had a famous slogan, “When E. F. Hutton talks, people listen.” When Jesus Christ talks, people should listen. He has the words of life.

“He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” - Revelation 2:7

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