The Journey of Listening

I am introducing learning how to listen into my life. How to respond, and be aware of other’s responses. Never something that I have been exceptionally good at, the ability to get a feel for the subtleties of those around me has proven to be more difficult for me than I perceive it to be for others. Those with whom I have relationships are those with whom I truly should have a deeper understanding, but it is not always the case.

I find it a common problem also that when I am having conversations, I need to pause and interpret myself for those around me. It is as if I get ahead of myself, or get too excited about what I am saying, and so I am eager to move the conversation along to the next point, and I leave my fellows behind, when I should be making sure that they are still with me.

Actually, that happens, too, when I am walking, that I can leave people behind, and I have to remind myself that there are others, walking with me, who I am actually wanting to travel with, but in my impatience or drive to get where I want to be next, I skip ahead and leave them behind, wondering if I want them to come with me.

That is not the way to lead people. Someone walking far ahead, without anyone following is not a leader at all, merely someone walking alone. And in this social lifestyle which we have fashioned for ourselves, that is a prospect that many are afraid of or even abhor.

The ability to walk alone is a strength. Those who are continually concerned that they must be with someone, that their lives would be empty without a social safety net, are living lives that are conditioned on the approval and presence of others. Or at least that is a negative way to look at it.

However, as Christians we should be looking for a group of people to join us on our journey. This group of people has the potential to draw us forward. As we focus on the brilliance of the light to which we are called, the light that shines forth in our darkness, and allows us to see ourselves for what we really are, we are allowed to see the good present in those around us.

And that makes us beautiful.

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