“Then you will call on me and come and pray to me and I will listen to you.” Jeremiah 29:12 NIV
“No one is listening to me,” shouted the petite teenage-girl, turning and dashing out the door, abandoning both the conversation and the home she dearly loved. The past few months had seemed like eternity, and well, she had had it.
As she ran down the sidewalk to an unknown destination, Jeremiah 29:12 burned in her mind. It caused her pause mid-flight.
She knew that verse was a promise. She also knew she had not been spending time with her heavenly father, so why would He listen now?
Because I love you more than you’ll ever comprehend.
Sighing, she seated herself on a nearby park bench. Her dusty sneakers kicking at the smudged sidewalk, all those years of Bible class, family devotions, and personal Bible reading reminding her of some truths.
She knew her heart needed to be right with God before He would hear her call.
She knew, no matter what she had or hadn’t done, forgiveness was her’s for the asking.
She knew from years of conversation, that she couldn’t do all the speaking, that she needed God to listen and she herself needed to listen to Him.
After pouring her heart out, punctuated by a few tears, she finally spoke her heart’s burdens. She settled back on the bench, feeling the warm sunshine bathe her face and dry her tears.
Now it was her turn to listen to Him.
Silent and listen are spelled with the same letters. To listen, we must be silent. To listen, we must rearrange the letters of ‘listen’ and be silent. Similarly, when we listen, sometimes we must rearrange our thoughts, our attitude, and our hearts.
When we listen, we must practice active listening. Allow ourselves to become fully engaged, even if we don’t like everything we hear.
Practicing active listening requires we abandon selective listening. (Which children in particular are professionals at!)
How can I be a better listener?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, Thank You that You are always ready to forgive me, and to listen to me. Even when it might feel that no one else is listening, or caring, You are. And You will never abandon me. Please help me not only to recall these promises, but to also model Your love through my words and my actions, Amen.
Thanks for reading! Please return by Monday, July 6, for the next post.