Have you ever been guilty of talking when you should be listening? Not only do you miss information, but it is also rude to be talking while someone else is speaking. If you have ever worked with children, you know that it a constant occurrence. They must be taught to listen to instructions.
I recently attended an event with a speaker in the front of the room sharing what we had all come to hear, but the two ladies in front of me were talking to each other so loudly that I couldn’t hear the speaker. What made it even worse was that the event was mainly for kids and they were chaperoning a group of students. I assumed they were teachers and if so, they were setting a bad example on listening and being respectful.
This is not the only time that I have seen this happen I have been at baccalaureates and graduations where adults have acted rudely. I am sure that if they came to such an event, they had a student that they cared about graduating but they were there in body only. They knew very little of what else was going on. This kind of behavior even happens at the church from time to time.
Do we act this way when God is speaking? We go to him in prayer, or we go to church to hear a message, and we are so busy talking when we should be listening that we don’t hear him. We are telling him our request and all the things we need him to do for us that we don’t get quiet long enough to listen. Even when we are not literally talking, we are thinking about a million other things. We get upset because we feel like God doesn’t speak to us but could it be that we’re just not listening.
We need to retrain ourselves to be respectful of the time that God and his messengers put in to teach and instruct us. When I taught preschool, if the kids started to get loud or talk when they weren’t supposed to I asked them to raise their hands and then to bring it down and put it over their mouths as a reminder not to talk. Maybe we need to practice this when we are listening to God.
“Come, my children, listen to me;I will teach you the fear of the Lord.” (Psalm 34:11) (NIV)