Learning to Listen Jul31


Learning to Listen

Blog post by Laura Smith

12 years ago this month I married my best friend. A young, naïve girl said “I do” to a sweet and handsome young soldier. We were kids when we started dating, barely on the cusp of adulthood but we knew our love was deep and we knew we wanted this life together.  Neither of us could possibly know what the next 12 years would hold for us - deployments, a dozen moves, 2 kiddos, 2 pups, death, sickness, joy, friends gained, friends lost, tears, laughter, salvation and a lot of hard learning along the way.

Holding his hand the other day I asked him, “What can I do to be a better wife in the next 12 years?” He responded slowly and kindly, but truthfully, with something I did not expect - “Be a better listener.” I smiled sweetly at him, thanking him for his honesty and then turned this over and over in my mind. The girl standing under the gazebo in a white dress 12 years ago would have been incredibly hurt and probably insulted at those words.  But this older, more life experienced, Jesus chasing woman accepted those words with gratitude.

James 1:19 says “...everyone must be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to anger.”  Instead of quick to listen, slow to speak, I was quick to speak, slow to listen! God gave us these words in this very specific order for a very big purpose!  The hard truth is that my husband was right.  I absolutely need to learn to be a better listener.  And not just with my husband, but in all relationships!

Listening as we mentor is a critical skill.  Mentoring can easily turn into counseling or coaching if we are quick to speak.  The truth is, we really don't want to "have all the answers" making our mentees dependant on us instead of on God.  Not only that, but we will miss so much of what our mentees are really trying to say if we don't have our best listening ears on.  So as we walk through life with our husbands, our friends, our coworkers, and our mentees, let's show our love for one another by speaking less and listening more.  How well we listen shows how much we care.

"Even fools are thought wise if they keep silent, and discerning if they hold their tongues." Proverbs 17:28

For His glory and the next generation,

Titus2 Mentoring Women

For resources to equip and guide you in your mentoring, go to www.titus2mentoringwomen.com

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One Response to “Learning to Listen”

  1. Martha Bush July 31, 2017 at 9:04 am #

    Very good words, and so true.