April 9, 2019

For full passage click: Isaiah 50:4-9a …“The Lord God has given me the tongue of a teacher, that I may know how to sustain the weary with a word. Morning by morning he wakens— wakens my ear to listen as those who are taught.” vs. 4

The prophet had a gift and he knew it. God had given him the ability to offer words of encouragement and consolation to hurting people. But he also knew that a clever tongue was only half the equation. His eloquence would mean nothing unless he could get beyond people’s minds and into their hearts. And that could only happen if he started every day determined to listen from the perspective of those he was intending to teach. That formula still is in effect for any who would presume to be teachers, and listening is always the key. We’ve all encountered folks with complicated ideas and vocabularies to match. Sometimes we’ll even comment on their sheer brilliance and then add, “I wish I knew what they were talking about.” They’ve never learned that the key to communication is an open mind and a closed mouth. What a blessing it is to have friends who are slow to offer advice and quick to open their ears! As they listen to us pour out our deepest concerns, they offer amazing healing and sometimes they don’t even have to say a word. We can see in their compassionate eyes that we’ve been heard, and often that’s all we need.

Thought for the Day: How do I know when someone is listening to me?