Devotion

The Art of Listening
(Proverbs 17:28 NIV) Even fools are thought wise if they keep silent, and discerning if they hold their tongues.

How many of you know that a response is not necessarily required for everything that is said. If you want to pinpoint the short fuse of a nonproductive conversation, it is found in the lack of people listening to each other. Communication is amplified on the side of talking, but the listening side is gravely abridged. Instead of having a conversation, communication is more so a debate of who can say more than what was previously said. What is the outcome of this tit-for-tat? You have minds overloaded with crossed messages, misinformation, and no understanding. Why? Because the art of listening was omitted. The next time you’re in a conversation, listen intently as the other person speaks and pause before you respond. Your pause acknowledges your attention, your comprehension, and your consideration to what the person is saying. You may be quite surprised to ‘hear’ how often the person doing the most talking ends up saying what he needs to hear without you having to say anything at all!

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