Devotional thoughts tagged as: 'listening'
Waiting on God's Word
It is not necessary we should discover new ideas in our prayers or meditations. This may only divert us and feed our vanity. It is sufficient if the Word, as we read and understand it, penetrates and dwells within us.
For example, as Mary pondered in her heart the things that were told to her by the shepherds, similar to us casually overhearing something which follows us for a long time, sticks in our mind, occupies, disturbs or delights us, without our ability to do anything about it, so in mediation God's Word seeks to enter in and remain with us. It strives to stir us, to work and operate in us, so that we shall not get away from it the whole day long. Then it will do its work in us, often without our being conscious of it.
The Ministry of Listening
The first service one owes to others in the Christian fellowship consists in listening to them. Christians, especially ministers, so often think they must always contribute something when they are in the company of others. They forget that listening can be a greater service than speaking. Many people are looking for an ear that will listen. They do not find it among Christians, because these Christians are talking when they should be listening. Pastoral care is distinguished from preaching by the fact that in addition to speaking the word, there is also the obligation of listening. Christians must learn to recapture the forgotten ministry of listening.