Listening is Hard!

"To listen is very hard, because it asks of us so much interior stability that we no longer need to prove ourselves by speeches, arguments, statements, or declarations. True listeners no longer have an inner need to make their presence known. They are free to receive, to welcome, to accept. Listening is much more than allowing another to talk while waiting for a chance to respond. Listening is paying full attention to others and welcoming them into our very beings. The beauty of listening is that, those who are listened to start feeling accepted, start taking their words more seriously and discovering their own true selves. Listening is a form of spiritual hospitality by which you invite strangers to become friends, to get to know their inner selves more fully, and even to dare to be silent with you."

--Henri Nouwen

One of the greatest invitations you have this week is to listen - to listen to yourself, to listen to others, to listen to God. Take a moment right now and consider how you might listen to:

  • God in creation, in His word, in His people?

  • others in ways that help them discover their true self?

  • yourself and what your body, mind and heart is telling you? 

"Listening is so close to being loved that for the average person, they are almost indistinguishable." 

-- David Augsburger  

Let's listen this week with loving in mind - with God, with others, with ourselves.

Joan Kelley