Have you ever been in a conversation with someone 

and not actually listened to what they were saying 

because you were too busy assembling your response?

Have you ever found yourself mindlessly saying

“Uh huh” when someone was trying to tell you something? 

Listening is not a passive process.

Many people do suffer from ADD; however, we live in a culture

 where attention deficit disorder has become the norm for some.

We've all experienced how frustrating it can be to have

 someone not listen to our thoughts, acknowledge our pain, 

or just consider our perspective and let us know they care.

Many people treat conversations like a competition, seeking to

 control the conversation to determine who can make the deepest, 

brightest, wisest, most intellectual points or wield, allegedly, the 

most superior information.

Finishing sentences for others and interrupting sends the

 message that what you have to express is more important than

what they have to say, which can diminish the speaker's confidence

 and relevance.

Allowing the other to finish their thought before forming 

a response is critical to excellent listening.

If you need to move the conversation forward, 

say something like,

 "Excuse me, I'm very sorry for interrupting,

 but..." Similarly, avoid jumping to conclusions or assuming you 

know what hasn't yet been mentioned.

Trying to persuade others without fully listening to their point

 of view might often cut our blessings short. Who knows, one 

might learn something that changes their perspective... even 

their lives.

Some people will lose out on a plethora of data because

 they are preoccupied with how to reply to or interrupt 

the speaker. This type of conversation is highly 

problematic! It has tremendous pitfalls!

Two of the most difficult lessons in life are to listen closely... 

and to bend low the ear of the heart.

The Scriptures teaches us to... 

be ready to listen, and slow to speak.

One of the reasons many of us are eager to speak next

 is that silence between speakers makes some people feel


We should avoid steering others down a 

rabbit hole by asking or making comments

 that are unrelated to the topic at hand.

Kindly allow others to completely clarify their stance, 

concern, etc. before responding. Instead of waiting for an 

opportunity to speak, let us endeavor to understand.

Listening is often more beneficial than speaking.

Listening demonstrates humility. Saying less and listening

 more will help you become more intellectual, caring, and


We are more aware, perceptive, and able to think clearly 

when our minds are quiet.

When we are attentive, we are providing something significant,

 valuable, and appreciated to the one who is speaking. The 

individual doing the talking will feel understood and appreciated.

When people are not bothered with speaking, their emphasis

 and attention is usually on listening. They may hear a variety 

of things and obtain unexpected insights.

Listening to God and listening to others were both essential

 skills for Jesus. Jesus was fully present with those He came into 

contact with. Jesus purposefully focused His attention on the


Listening to truly understand and waiting for the individual to 

finish their narrative are two of the most useful things we can do 

for each other.

In allowing people to speak their experiences, Jesus was gentle 

and patient. Jesus was compassionate. He also paid close attention

 to what was not mentioned.

Jesus wept with them and was present in their anguish. Jesus

 realized that listening with His ears and His heart was the finest 

way to minister to people.

People in crisis, grief, or pain seek the attention from one who 

listens with their ears and their hearts.

James 1:19 gives us a Scriptural example,

 “So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be 

swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath.” 

The Scriptures encourages us to be quick to hear

 and slow to speak.

When we're talking, we're not usually 

listening much, and we're not always 

learning much either.

A good listener gets to learn something.

It can be incredibly beneficial to listen more and say less.

We win the respect and trust of those with whom we 

converse, and when we talk, we command attention.

It doesn't mean we're thinking less, but quieting our tongues 

and minds can lead to an increase in information and knowledge 

flow. With increased sensitivity and awareness, our thoughts 

might become clearer and more stimulated. These are the benefits

 of cultivating inner and outer silence.

It can be difficult to remain aware of what is going on around

 us when we are constantly talking. We hear more when we 

talk less. 

The more we listen, the more we understand how much we don't 

know and how much we need to know. The humility that comes 

with it is a true sign of wisdom and enlightenment.

We should feel deeply honored when someone invites us in 

to be a part of understanding the experiences they have lived 

or are living. It is a great gift of trust that we should never take

 for granted.

We should always hold everything one has said in the strictest 

of confidence, even if the speaker has not requested it. People


are sometimes open and vulnerable in times of crisis and

 nothing they say needs to be repeated outside of the 

confidence in which they have spoken to us.

A positively good parable for living life is the Golden Rule:

"Do unto others what you would have

 them do unto you."

Listening is essential in relationships. It is also 

important that we listen with our hearts to hear 

what is not being said; to see what feelings and 

needs are really being conveyed. 

To listen allows us to walk through the experience

 of another's life.

It is interesting that in James 1:19, James' opening 

exhortation is... 

“Be quick to listen, slow to speak,

 and slow to get angry.” 

This follows the same sequence that Luke uses 

after presenting the parable of the sower. 

"Whoever has ears to hear, 

let them hear."

Luke 8:8

Jesus follows it with the exhortation, 

“Consider carefully how you listen.” 

Luke 8:18 

In Matthew (13:9), Jesus immediately follows the

 parable with, 

“Whoever has ears, let them hear.”

We should even wait a moment before we begin to respond.

This gives the speaker a chance to add anything else they 

may have thought of.

By waiting an additional moment before we reply we also 

let the speaker know they have been heard completely.

If we practice this for a time people will relax when 

conversing with us because they will know that they 

don’t have to rush to get their point across.

They will appreciate the fact that they can 

communicate with us and be heard and respected.

Effective listening develops empathy,

which is the capacity for a deep understanding

of another's experience.

We should sincerely work to understand one's message;

and ask relevant, open-ended questions to clarify

and learn more, i.e., (“What do you mean by that?” 

or “When did that happen?…”) this may help us stay


Not interrupting gives the speaker 

a sense of importance, and it is the 

respectful thing to do.

May we listen with the genuine intent to understand 

what the speaker is communicating. "It is better to 

listen in order to understand... than to listen in order to 


May we be more receptive to the speaker’s needs –

they may just need us to listen, and not try to fix the 


Sometimes being listened to is


“We have two ears and one mouth

so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.”

Are you listening for understanding,

or are you focused more on what you 

are going to say next? 

As the other person is speaking, are you 

 not actually listening to much of what 

the other person is saying, or are you

busy crafting your response?

To gain greater insight, let us focus 

our attention on listening more.

Listening is a magnetic and strange thing,

a creative force.

Listening is the ability to accurately receive and 

interpret messages in the communication process. 

Listening is key to all effective communication. 

Without the ability to listen effectively, 

messages are easily misunderstood.

Listening is Not the Same as 


Listening requires focus and concentrated effort.

Listening means paying attention not only to the story, 

but how it is told.

Listening is an under valued art. 

Constantly talking isn’t necessarily...


Paying attention

 is the cardinal rule for good listening.

* Pay attention to sound

* Hear with thoughtful attention

* Be considerate

The most basic and powerful way to connect 

to another person is to listen... 

just listen.

"No one is as deaf as the person

who will not listen."

Tips for being a good listener:

Maintain good eye contact. 

When we don't look someone in the eyes, 

it can come off as being arrogant, untrustworthy,

 disingenuous, or stand-offish. 

Our outward behavior can speak volumes and even create 

discomfort. Crossed arms can send the wrong message. 

Studies have shown that the subtleties of body language, tone,

 and posturing accounts for a huge part of how information is

 communicated or miscommunicated.

Let us cultivate the right demeanor. 

Listen with all senses and seriously concentrate and consider 

what is being said. Ask questions, when there is a pause, that

 takes the conversation deeper. Do not interrupt or speak over 

someone who is talking.

Nodding aggressively when someone is talking to you 

 indicates you are impatient and want the speaker to finish 

speaking quickly! This makes other people feel invalidated 

and rushed. Instead, let us gently and occasionally, nod 

our head to indicate agreement and interest in what the

 other person is telling us.

Let us PRAY for the gift of a 

listening heart.

"Wise men talk because they have something to say,

Plato once said. "Fools, because they have to say 

something." We can all become better communicators

if... we train ourselves to listen more.

To put more effort into listening

and less into telling

 is very rewarding.


We earn the right to be heard 

by sincerely listening to others.