There was a time in my life when everything was just plain confusing and no matter what I did, it seemed to be messed up in some way. Why couldn’t I get things right? Why were my relationships hurting? Why was I having a hard time at work, at school, and at home? The “why” I figured out, was because I was not a good listener. I thought I had it all figured out. I was growing up, moved out on my own and now I thought I had it all figured out! NOT!
Mark 4:1-3 (TNIV) 1 Again Jesus began to teach by the lake. The crowd that gathered around him was so large that he got into a boat and sat in it out on the lake, while all the people were along the shore at the water’s edge. 2 He taught them many things by parables, and in his teaching said: 3 “Listen! A farmer went out to sow his seed.
There is an art to “listening”. Have you ever noticed that you have two ears and only one tongue (of course you have noticed, lol)….but think about it…..maybe listening for the truth and applying it is more important than telling yourself that you know all the truths in life. This comes from an African parable….maybe we should listen twice as much as we speak? Who should we be listening too? There are many wise and encouraging people in this world that are good to listen too. However, I believe the ultimate teacher is Jesus, indeed, God Himself.
If he is the ultimate teacher about life….then why aren’t we listening? In my life, I paid a price for not taking the time to listen. Things just turned out wrong! People tell me often, “well, I don’t have the time to pray, to talk to God every day or to study my Bible”
Hello….this is a big part of listening to the ultimate teacher on this thing called LIFE. Here is what I say: I have found that if it is important to me, I am able to find the time….and if you know me, I LIVE A VERY BUSY LIFE! Not having the time is an excuse. Sorry to hit home hard……..but if you really value something….you make the time!
I believe that the best time in general is the morning time. Is there too much to do when you first get up (the kids and the like)? Go to bed a little earlier and transpose that time to the morning (get up a little earlier before everyone else does). If we don’t listen to Jesus, indeed, to God…..we often run around in circles blindly and get way off track. When we take the time to listen….we find the path and start to find true purpose and understanding in life.
The key to listening to Jesus…is then to apply what we have heard! Makes sense doesn’t it? But…oh, how often we forget this part. All the knowledge in the world is useless if we don’t apply it to our lives. The Bible (Old and new Testaments) is clear enough to understand if we truly WANT to understand it…yet obscure enough if we want to tune it out. Yes….anything in life worth having starts with desire. If you have the desire to listen to God and the desire to apply His wisdom to your life…you will be surprised at how clear His wisdom becomes…as well as how clear your life becomes.
So let’s look here….listening has three requirements:
1. Time (make it)
2. Concentration (think about it)…and the third is the most important….
3. Application (do it). Your life will change and confusion will rarely rear its head (and when it does…we’ll have learned to “listen” to Jesus and the confusion will again be laid to rest).
Maybe we SHOULD listen to Jesus twice as much as we speak….that’s why we have two ears!
Matthew 11:15 (TNIV) [Jesus is speaking…to YOU] Whoever has ears, let them hear.
James 1:19 (TNIV) (James, the half-brother of Jesus is speaking) My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak……
James 1:22-25 (TNIV) 22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Those who listen to the word but do not do what it says are like people who look at their faces in a mirror 24 and, after looking at themselves, go away and immediately forget what they look like. 25 But those who look intently into the perfect law that gives freedom and continue in it–not forgetting what they have heard but doing it–they will be blessed in what they do.