From the Pastor’s Desk (April 28, 2013)
So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, and slow to wrath. James 1:19
He who has knowledge spares his words, and a man of understanding is of a calm spirit. Proverbs 17:27
How are your listening skills? When someone is talking to you, do you listen to them or do you cut them off and begin talking about what you want to talk about? Cecil Osborn makes a very profound statement, he says, “Listening is not just passive hearing. It is an active participating experience in which you pay genuine attention to what the other person is saying…”
One of the most frustrating things is to be talking to someone about something you are dealing with; or you are explaining something to someone, and they cut you off and they start talking; poor listening skills. There are times when you may have something on your mind that you need to talk to someone about, and you are in the process of pouring out your heart, then, all of a sudden, they cut you off just like you are not even talking and start talking about their situation, or even worse, they change the subject and start talking about something else totally different. Here is one that really is an issue, you are talking to them and they are looking at everything else showing that they are really not interested in what you are saying. How rude!
Poor listening skills can give the impression that you do not care about what the other person is talking about. Please notice is said, “It can give the impression…” It is not that you don’t care; it is more than likely you may have poor listening skills. I know we all may have this problem sometimes.
There are some individuals, when you are talking to them, always make you feel like you are the most important person in the room; they are glued to every word that comes out of your mouth, and they don’t even offer you their opinion, solution, suggestion or rebuttal. They patiently wait until you are finished and then they of say whatever needs to be said.
It is important that we take time to listen to what others have to say; it shows how much we care about an individual. There is an important statement I once heard someone state, “People do not care how much know, until they know how much care.” Those words really rocked me; it made me think, “am I showing others how much I care about them?” Listening is one of the kindest things we can do. We must remember that we ought to treat others the way we want to be treated. Therefore, it is imperative that you understand that one day you will need to talk to someone, and how would you feel if they cut you off and started talking about themselves, or they looked everywhere but at you while you were pouring out your heart; or they started looking at their cell phone? I know you would not feel too good about that. Next time someone comes to you and wants to talk about something, stop and listen to them.
Your servant in Christ,