Listening is part of communication and is often thought of as an art. When we say it is an art, we are effectively saying this person was born with this ability. It is natural for them. But what about the rest of us that don’t have the natural ability to communicate? Are we doomed to live our lives without being able to communicate well?
The Lord is clear in His Word that we are fearfully and wonderfully made. (Psalm 139:14) God made humans to have the capacity to learn and from learning to grow. That growth will be shown in our day to day behaviors. Though some of us have within our temperaments the natural gift of communication in the form of expression, some of us don’t. We are the ones who struggle with expressing ourselves. We will look more at this in a future article.
But communication is so much more than just talking; it is about listening. How we define listening is a first step in boosting up your capacity to listen well. That capacity to listen well can grow as we practice what we learn and as we rely on God’s strength and guidance to put what we learn to practice.
Listening vs. Hearing
Hearing and listening are not the same. We can hear a baby crying and not get up and respond to it. We can hear the T.V. program but our mind is on the issue we are having at work. Sound waves come into our ears constantly. We live in a world full of sounds everywhere. But it takes more than just the sound waves coming in for us to be truly listening. It takes the act of doing.
We can learn what God wants to tell us from his Word about listening. In the Hebrew language, the word “shema” is translated as “listen” but there is more to it. Watch the video below from The Bible Project about this word and learn what God wants us to understand about what listening really means.
So you have just heard the video but have you really listened well? Take what you have just heard and do something with it. Tell a friend, write about it in your journal, make a comment hear about it and most definitely talk to God about it and ask him to help you in the days ahead to put true listening into practice.
Communication is a skill that can be learned. We will continue to look at this in the weeks ahead. Thanks for listening!