How are Your Listening Skills?
”Are you listening to me?” I really wanted to ask during a recent conversation, where the listener kept saying, ”Right, right”. I guess they were trying to make me feel like they were being attentive and agreeing with me but it made me feel like I just needed to end the conversation; as chances were, they had no idea what I was talking about.
It is frustrating when you have something you really want to say and the listener doesn’t seem to be paying attention. How good of a listener are you? I must admit, I also, am not usually a really good listener, for many reasons. My favorite excuse for not listening is that I have so much circling around in my brain at any given moment; that I am multitasking while listening. I know that is really impossible if I want to clearly understand the speaker. I once read a list of questions published in a leadership journal that asked the reader to think about their listening skills. As I thought about my current listening skills, I attempted to reconstruct the list. I came up with about 7 questions. I note that my problem areas lie with numbers; 1, 3, sometimes 5, 6, and maybe 7 depending on what’sÂ said. Therefore, I guess my skills don’t look so good, with a 2 out of 7 ranking. What about you?
- Since our brains work about four times faster than the average person talks; do you use this time to think about other things while you’re keeping track of the conversation?
- Do you listen primarily for facts rather than ideas when someone is speaking?
- Do you avoid listening to things you feel will be too difficult to understand?
- Can you tell from a person’s appearance and delivery that there won’t be anything worthwhile said?
- When someone is talking to you, do you appear to be paying attention when you’re not?
- When listening, are you distracted by outside sights and sounds?
- Do certain words and phrases prejudice you so you can’t listen objectively?
How are your listening skills?Â What’s your rate? Did you find that you have some of these issues too? Isn’t is good to know that our creator’s listening skills are top-notch? God is consistently listening to us as He does not forget His people. He hears us when we seek Him out through prayer or simply crying out. His great listening skills provide a tremendous comfort knowing there is a coming restoration.
Our focus verse this week is about the wonder of God’s listening skills. God listens to us when we seek Him out and if we pray according to His will, He answers us. Just like the letter from Jeremiah to the exiles in Babylon from Jerusalem; He has great plans for us and they are for our good, our purpose to fulfill while on earth. God is always with us and is listening to us when we speak our hearts and minds to Him. God wants us to know that He is with us, watching, and ready to listen when we ask. We may not get what we want in life, but just like a good parent answers, we will get what God’s purpose directs.
In those days when you pray, I will listen. Jeremiah 29:12 (NLT)
God the Great Listener
If we want to be listened to, then we need to look to God first, knowing that He is there waiting for us to speak. Our life plan should begin with knowing that we will speak to God about life, before anyone else. If our decisions and problems go to God first, then He will help us solve them with others. God is a great listener as He has extreme listening skills, 3 of which that we too, should strive for in our own listening skills.
- Prepare to Listen ”“ God is always prepared to listen. He has no distractions that keeps Him from focusing solely upon us, when we choose to speak to Him.
- Active Listening ”“ God always makes the effort to listen to our words, if we let Him and He never rushes us to finish. He patiently waits while we pour our heart out to Him.
- Empathetic Listening ”“ God understands our perspective through His son, who experienced everything we experience. When we weep so does He and likewise when we rejoice, God celebrates also.
As you practice your skills of listening to others, remember that the master listener is standing by waiting on you to come to Him. Speak to God about your life, before anyone else. Acknowledge that He alone can answer your needs, as He is waiting to listen to you. You must trust God with your life and problems through prayer, before trying to bend the ear of someone with subpar listening skills.
Be challenged to turn to God first, knowing that He is ready and waiting. You can depend on Him to listen to your problems and through your trust; He will help you. Find motivation to go to God first, knowing that you will have a day of restoration with your trust in Christ. You may not get your answers solved the way you wish now, but be assured that restoration will come. The biggest comfort is knowing that God is on your side. He is ready and waiting for you to ask Him to listen to whatever you wish to say.
God is standing by now and always, ready to listen, won’t you give Him a call him first?
Love in Christ,
Post ScriptGod gives you answers every day. Learn to listen. Click To Tweet
What are your thoughts? Join Us in Discussion
Do you struggle with your listening skills? Can you take comfort in knowing that God is always ready and waiting to listen to you? Do you go to God first to tell your life issues to, because you know He is a good listener? Join us in discussion on the listening skills of God.