Loving and Listening

*This Devotional is an excerpt from Ptr. Peter Tan-Chi’s message delivered at CCF St Francis 01 Aug 2010

Luke 10:38-39
As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said.

What will make someone listen to you? Go to a restaurant and look at couples. How can you tell who are the married couples and who are those that are not yet married? When married couples eat, they don’t look at each other, they just look at the food. Generally, couples who are not yet married look at each other, serve the other person. When there is love there is interest. I am not saying those of you who are married already are no longer showing any interest. I realize that you need to practice how to love. Love means you need to listen. I am learning always to listen. Most people love their children but they have forgotten the art of listening. Maybe they are too busy, watching TV. Have you heard of how families talk to each other? Children love their parents who listen to them. But many children are disappointed because parents don’t listen. For example, parents who watch TV, when your son wants to talk to you, what do you do? You say,“Wait”. When commercial comes, “What do you want to say?” When you do that, you are giving a signal that television is more important than listening to them. All parents must learn to listen to their children. To do this, you need to develop interest to be involved in their lives.

God has been teaching me to always get involved in the lives of my children. Many parents are the last to find out what is going on with their children. I have seen parents and I tell them, “Do you know this is what is happening to your son?” They say, “I did not know that. “ I say, “You did not know that because you are too busy. Your son has been giving you a signal.” He tells you, “Daddy, I want to talk to you. “ But you are too busy. Soon they will give up talking to you. How do you love people? Listen to them, to your children, to your husband or wife.

I remember this joke about men. Usually men will stay away all night trying to figure out what the woman has just said. If you are courting someone and your girlfriend says something, you spend the whole night analyzing. “What does she mean by ‘dear’?”, “What does she mean by ‘I really appreciate you’”. Once they get married, before the wife is even finished with her sentence, he is already snoring. When you love, you listen. Most of us love to talk, and talk. We need to listen.

” And I will listen to His voice
Could it be that He is only waiting there to see
If I will learn to love the dreams
that He has dreamed for me
Can’t imagine what the future holds
But I’ve already made my choice
And this is where I stand
Until He moves me on
And I will listen to His voice”

-T Paris

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