Then I said, “Listen, you leaders of Jacob, you rulers of the house of Israel.” (Mic. 3:1)
The Zimbabwe District Board of Administration had gathered to make important decisions. An hour into the meeting, one of the board members looked sternly at me and said, “Umfundisi (Pastor) Jim, listen to us!”
I defensively retorted, “I am listening!”
“No, you’re not. You may physically look as though you are listening, but your mind is not paying much attention to what we are saying. We can sense your impatience as we are sharing with you. It seems to me that you are just waiting for your turn to speak!”
Although I hated to admit it, Umfundisi Moyo was right. I wasn’t really interested in what the other members of the board were saying. I wanted them to get done talking so I could tell them what I was thinking! I had been caught! Embarrassed, I humbly asked for forgiveness.
In my journal, I recorded the following words I heard someone once share: “A Christian needs to learn how to be a good listener. Jesus Christ was a great listener, and that allowed him to foster deep relationships with those he came to minister to. An individual who does not listen well to others may soon be unable to listen well to God!”
Good listening is a characteristic of true followers of Jesus. It demonstrates positive attributes like love, self-control, humility, and patience.
Learn to listen and pay genuine attention to what others are saying.
Jim “Umfundisi” Lo is a professor at Indiana Wesleyan University, cross-cultural leader, intercessor, and author of several books published by Wesleyan Publishing House.
© 2023 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission. Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.