And we also thank God continually because, when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men, but as it actually is, the word of God, which is at work in you who believe. 1 Thessalonians 2:13 (NIV)
Are You Listening?
Are you listening? Would you say that you are a good or poor listener? That depends on who is talking. I’ve been told that I am not that great of a listener. Why is that? My attention span is not real long. I get bored easily and become quite distracted. There are plenty of times that I would rather be the one talking than the one listening.
How about listening to me, how well do you listen to me? That’s a good question that is hard for me to answer. Why is that? I don’t think that I’m a very good judge of how well I listen to you. I know that I can become impatient and not wait to listen to all that you have to say to me. Listening to you is a commitment that requires real discipline. What do you mean by that? It is very easy for me to race through life and never sit down to take time to listen to you. I’ve hardly ever been able to hear you speaking to me over the noise and busyness of my life. I’ve found that you usually speak with a quiet voice in moments of stillness that I spend with you in your word. You never seem to shout out to me over the noise of the crowd. There have been many times when you have brought my life to a complete stop so that I could hear from you. How have you liked that? Not much, those “complete stops” of yours are usually pretty uncomfortable. Is that an understatement? Yes, it is. I would rather listen to you attentively in the first place. I’m not complaining though, those “complete stops” of yours, although painful, have gotten my attention and helped me to listen to you. Yes, they have.
How will you know if you are really listening to me? I suppose the real judge of my listening will be how well I put into practice what you are asking of me. If I follow and obey you then that seems like a good sign that I have listened to you. Yes, it is.
Is listening to me becoming easier or harder for you to do? At one time I thought I had so much to say. It was much harder to listen. Now, I hunger and thirst for you and your word. It is my joy to hear, accept, receive and believe all that you are saying to me. Why is that? When I’m really listening to you I know that you are working in and through my life. Yes, I am. I welcome you to do anything and everything in and through me that you have in your plans for me. So, here I am, listening attentively to you. Yes, you are.
Lord, thank you for helping me to receive, hear, accept, and believe your word. Your word is transforming who I am and all I do. It is my delight to allow your word to be at work in me. Use me to proclaim your word to others so it can be at work in them. Amen
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