Good Afternoon, God!
We used to laugh God, about how my Mother had a Listening Gene. Her friends called her “Shoulders” . . . and I got the Listening Gene too. That’s how I thought of it — as genetic — not as a skill. And I never feel more ME than when I am listening — truly listening to someone. This came back to me recently while listening to FLOURISH by Martin Seligman. The army had asked him to work on a program to help soldiers build “Well-Being”. One aspect was to teach 4 patterns of Listening to another person. 1) hm 2) that’s nice 3) Wow, Great and 4) Hey, tell me more.
Hearing so as to help a person Speak. Now, THAT, God, is Listening.
That kind of listening is a sacred act, God. Indeed, just this morning it came to me that Listening with our whole heart is a Sacrament. That is what my spiritual director does for me. That is what goes on in our Wednesday Morning Women’s Prayer Group. We don’t need priests or ministers or certified people. Anyone can do it. Although, training can certainly help us.
And for our family, God, dining out is a special opportunity to listen to each other. A lovely restaurant . . . can be as filled with Your Spirit as a church.
Now, God, as I am writing . . . it comes to me that I CRAVE more time listening to myself. Of course, DOING IT would mean understanding that I NEED it — that hearing myself is like feeding myself.
WOW! Now THAT is a REFRAME!