My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.
Written by: Matt Swartz
I am by nature someone who can be defensive when it comes to conflict. When things start heating up, I shift into a mode where I listen only to formulate my response. I know this is completely unhealthy. But I also know it comes from a place in me that says self-preservation is the most critical mission in life, which suffocates the ability to really listen when things get messy.
Here is the problem with thinking self-preservation is the critical mission in life: It doesn’t leave room for growth. This defensive posture makes the faulty assumption that my point of view is 100 percent accurate and cannot be challenged. It flies in the face of this challenge from James 1 which says listen first, respond carefully, and avoid anger. This verse deeply impacted my defensive posture because it said that proving I am right is not my mission in life.
Thought of the day: When it comes to your relationships, how would you grade yourself on how well you listen? Do you listen to respond or listen to understand?
Prayer: Jesus, help me today to make the choice to be one who listens well in all my relationships. Amen.