Skip to main content

Quick to Listen, Slow to Speak

Know this, my dear brothers and sisters: everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to grow angry.
-James 1:19

The book of James is intensely practical.  James reminds me of Proverbs.  Most of James is not deep theology that is hard to understand, but basic, boot camp material.  Some people want to move on to the deeper waters.  Practical must mean shallow and not very spiritual, right?

A secret of the wise is that everyone needs the basics, the fundamentals.  The so-called deeper material is built on the basics.  To swim in the deeps, everything you learned in the shallows has to be second-nature.  If you observe athletes in training, you will see them practicing the basics; the simple stuff.

How we listen and how we speak are fundamentals, they are basic building blocks that our Christian lives are built on.  If they are faulty, it will negatively effect our lives in Christ.

When we are slow listeners, we are not tuned in to others.  We are distracted.  We talk back fast.  Sometimes we respond back, when the other person has not even finished speaking.  We talk past people.  This all does not make for good fellowship or community!

When we respond quick and don't hear others, it is a "self" problem.  We are selfish and lack self-control.  The Spirit of God helps us with self-control.  Our self wants center stage in our lives.

When we are selfish and want to be the center it is often linked to low self-esteem.  It is like eating candy.  It tastes good for a minute, but is not nutritious and does damage.  It is a paradox that the egotist and narcissist actually suffer from low self-esteem, a deep sense of inadequacy, and self-hatred.

The person who selfishly talks quick, re-actively, and does not hear others ("I knew what you were going to say"), really has a love problem.  They need to receive God's love in their hearts and have that love take hold and bear fruit.  The fruit of the Spirit is firstly love, and lastly, self-control (Gal. 5:22-3).


Christian people with good self-esteem, receive God's love, love themselves, and want to love others.  Listening is loving and basic.  You might have a lot to say in response to someone else.  If they can hear you, you will be able to slowly tell them everything in your heart.

Slowly means hesitant, as in when a filter slows down the flow. We sometimes say to someone, "you are too slow"; or of someone, "he is slow to get this".  James is saying that we need to be like that with speaking: hesitant and pausing.  People who have no self-control and just react will think we are dumb when we are slow to speak.  But you are not.  You are wise if you slow down your speaking and quicken your hearing.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Two Disciples and The Two Donkeys

When they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus gave two disciples a task.  He said to them, “Go into the village over there. As soon as you enter, you will find a donkey tied up and a colt with it. Untie them and bring them to me.  If anybody says anything to you, say that the Lord needs it.” He sent them off right away.  Now this happened to fulfill what the prophet said,  Say to Daughter Zion, “Look, your king is coming to you, humble and riding on a donkey, and on a colt the donkey’s offspring.”  The disciples went and did just as Jesus had ordered them.  They brought the donkey and the colt and laid their clothes on them. Then he sat on them.
-Matthew 21:1-7

On what we call Palm Sunday, Jesus rode a donkey into Jerusalem. But, he had two disciples get two donkeys: a mother donkey and her colt. Jesus rode the young male who had never been ridden before. In his carefulness and perhaps kindness towards these two donkeys, he had th…

God's Secret, Hidden People

(The children) of Elam 1,254.  -Ezra 2:7

Do you feel hidden?

The name Elam means secret or hidden.  Do you feel like you are on the shelf, not being used by God?  Maybe you are part of God's secret agents.

God has people who are in secret.

I have this idea that God has His attention on secret people.   I believe that God has rewards for secret people coming.  You may feel on the shelf, but you are actually hidden for a special purpose.  God has you in reserve.

The number one thousand, two-hundred, and fifty-four; tells us God's plan for his hidden, secret, and in reserve children

One thousand speaks of recompense.

Recompense means that you will be compensated or made amends to, due to harm or loss you suffered. In Genesis 20:16 is the story of Abimelech recompensing Abraham and Sarah.

Two speaks of fellowship, partnership, and co-laboring (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12).

There are hidden people who have felt like they are "going it alone", who are about to be joined by someone.  …

God Will Always Bless Your Rest, by Graham Cooke

Graham Cooke:

"So in Genesis 2, by the seventh day, God completed his work which he had done and he rested on the 7th day from all his work he had done, and then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it he rested from all his work which God had created and made.

God will always bless your rest.

Always.

Since I learned rest, there has never been a time when God has not blessed that rest and honored that rest and sanctified my rest.

In other words, set aside peace for me; set aside rest for me.

So, for me, therefore, when God blesses something and sanctifies it and sets it apart; what that means is rest is always available as an absolute essential for life.

So, every circumstance you encounter already has rest in the issue.

No matter how hard, no matter how harsh, no matter how difficult, no matter how awful; every single circumstance has rest, because it's the one thing that God has blessed and sanctified, in terms of his relationship with you.

So, it'…