Apr 28

Listen ! Understand !

It was 1964 when Eric Burdon and The Animals released the single “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood” from the album “House of the Rising Sun.” and they joined the British Invasion. The chorus repeats;
I'm just a soul whose intentions are good
Oh Lord, please don’t let me be misunderstood

Such a true line for all of us. We are just souls whose intentions are good, and we desperately do not want to be misunderstood. What happens when the inevitable happens and you are misunderstood? Instant messages, e-mail, tweets, are all ripe areas of communication where someone can easily become misunderstood. Even two people face to face run the risk of miscommunication if they don’t practice good listening skills.
One of the skills of being a good pastor is being able to listen. I have been blessed with that ability when in the presence of a member in the hospital or a homebound senior. In a meeting where ideas are being exchanged however I am not such a good listener. I tend to get more excited about my own ideas while running the risk of misunderstanding the next person. Unfortunately I am also not the only person in meetings like this, my faults are common.
In the Bible when Jesus wants to relay something important he makes sure he has attention by telling everyone to listen. Over and over again throughout the Gospels Jesus speaks up and tells his disciples to listen; Mark 7:14 “Again Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen to me, everyone, and understand this.” In this passage He not only tells them to listen He reminds them to understand.
I’m just a soul whose intentions are good
Oh Lord, please don’t let me be misunderstood
So as I go and practice my listening skills, I will pray that others are doing the same. As I attempt to not misunderstand those who I come into contact with, I pray they will not misunderstand me. My intentions are good, one day I hope to be understood.

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