My great-grandfather shared this poem with me when I was just a little girl:
A wise old owl lived in an oak
The more he saw
the less he spoke
The less he spoke
the more he heard.
Why can’t we all be like
that wise old bird?
Over the past few months, God has shown me more of the privilege of listening. He has revealed more of the blessing that comes from being obedient to this verse:
My dear friends, you should be quick to listen and slow to speak or get angry.
God has prompted me to lean in and listen to those around me, for ‘out of the heart the mouth speaks’ (Luke 6:45). Basically, I’ve found that if you really listen (not just half-heartedly or inattentively), you soon learn about a person’s hopes, dreams, doubts, fears, disappointments, longings etc. The things weighing on their hearts tend to flow out of their mouths.
Some of my greatest ministry opportunities come from simply ‘lending an ear’. I find that when I hold my tongue in the moment (to make room for uninterrupted listening), I can then have a voice later in a more effective manner, when I take things to God in prayer. We can never underestimate the power of prayer!
Make room to listen, then pray.
(I’d encourage everyone to do this more and just see what God does)
Scripture reference: The Holy Bible
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