UpBeat Spiritual Living: Reblog from Wes Hopper: Just Listen
© 2012 Kebba Buckley Button. World Rights Reserved
Today’s offering centers on a reblog of Wes Hopper’s Gratitude: Just Listen, from www.dailygratitude.com, article date May 16, 2012. Wes is a champion of gratitude and of writings about it.
But first, from me, how is this a spiritual discussion? It’s very profound: do you know what makes the most people feel loved? When they are listened to! As Jesus advised us repeatedly to love one another, you can show and share your love by listening. Also, scripture specifically advises us to practice listening to others. For example, James 1:19 (NIV) offers:
19 My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry…
Here then is Wes Hopper’s commentary on this sacred practice: listening.
“When someone really hears you without passing judgment on you, without taking responsibility for you, without trying to mold you, it feels darn good. When I have been listened to, when I have been heard, I am able to re-perceive my world in a new way and go on. It is astonishing how elements that seem insoluble become soluble when someone listens. ”
When I was a kid, I found I got a lot of attention for being the answer person. If someone had a problem, I had the answer (or so I thought.) That approach worked pretty well until I became an adult and found myself hanging around with adult women.
I was amazed to find out that most women were not impressed by my answers. I realized that what they really wanted was for me to shut up and listen. At first that made no sense to me at all. How could I help more by not saying anything?
I hated to think what that meant about the value of my advice. Just as a test, one time I let a friend with a problem talk about it with me for about a half hour. I didn’t say a word. I just nodded and mumbled sympathetic noises. When she was done, she told me, “Thanks, you’ve been very helpful.”
That’s when I realized the truth in our quote for today. First, people have most of their own answers already. Secondly, they just need to be heard. That’s the gift we can give them. And they can give us, if we’re willing to let them. Be willing to shut up and listen.
All the best,
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