We live in an era of “me”: “Let me share MY opinion,” “Listen to what I have to say,” “Give me my 15-seconds of fame.” One of my favorite dialogues comes from the classic movie, “The Wizard of Oz.” Dorothy is talking to the scarecrow in the field. He says to her, “I don’t have a brain.”
She says, “How can you talk without a brain?”
And then he replies, “I don’t know. But some people without brains do a whole lot of talking, don’t they?” Classic. I love it.
Proverbs 1.5 says, “Let the wise listen and add to their learning.” Listening is the key. When you’re in conversation, instead of thinking of what you’re going to say next, just listen to the other person. Deliberately try to understand their thoughts and feelings. Focus on them. It will change the conversation!
Listen to the voice of conscience. Many people think of the inner voice urging them to do the right thing—the proverbial angel standing on one shoulder. In the Greek language, the verb is actually is closer to the idea of “knowing with,” being conscientious not only of others but also of society and God. Our conscience directs us to a symbiotic relationship with God, each other, and ourselves. Listen to it.
Listen to wise counsel. None of us is adequate in ourselves for all things. We can all benefit from the learned experiences and the perspectives of others. If we surround ourselves with people who will steer us toward what is better, we will have an easier journey through life.
Listen to the voice of reason. Know about the nature and character of God that sets up what is right and wrong. Understand the absolutes that Scripture teaches about truth. Think straight, knowing that “A” cannot equal “not A”, instead of what our culture teaches. God expects us to use our brains.
Listen to the voice of God in Scripture. The words of the Bible are how God has chosen to reveal Himself to us. Read and digest it. Meditate on it. Pray about it, and let the Lord speak to you through His Word.