You will indeed listen, but never understand, you will indeed look, but never perceive. For this people’s heart has grown dull, their ears are hard of hearing, and they have shut their eyes… Matthew 13:14
When was the last time you gave life a good listening to?
Remember pressing a seashell to you ear,
to catch that ancient echo
of booming surf?
Recall when someone dear
leaned in close
to hear the heart behind your words.
And that time you were drawn
by a tone, a voice, a word
and held spellbound till all boundaries fell away.
Picture that special person,
far away or long gone,
you’d love to listen to once again?
There’s a lot of difference between listening and hearing. G. K. Chesterton
Every minute so much is going on,
through and beyond us.
And moment by moment
we choose whether and how deeply,
we are willing to connect with life.
The most potent, most intimate form
of connecting and communicating
is neither talking nor touching but listening.
Let us not confuse listening with hearing,
for they are as distinct from one another
as tourists from pilgrims.
Heart listening, attentive presence,
leads to a communion of souls.
It is the truest way to show how deeply we care.
The biggest gift you can give is to be absolutely present.
Our ever-present Maker
abides in silence,
all the better to listen well to everything.
Such sacred heart listening,
as a loving practice,
is God-like behavior.
Listening is the highest duty of love. Paul Tillich
The listening Christ
taught us to disarm our hearts
by opening ears once deaf to others.
He commissioned each of us
to heal by listening
to our enemies.
For how can we
be followers of the Christ
till we’ve learned how to love those who hate us?
Followers of the way of non-violence,
who bear the crossbars of suffering-love,
courageously choose to listen to the ones who would harm them.
And in times of conflict and division
sacred heart listening opens up
the risky road to reconciliation.
When we set agendas aside,
to listen and be listened to,
our desire un-taps a well of understanding.
Sacred Heart listening
is how Good News is heard,
broken open and proclaimed.
Choosing to listen
is our first step
into the Domain of the Silent One.
Listen, O Israel: The Holy One is our God, the Most Holy alone.
You shall love the Holy One with all heart, with all soul,
and with all strength. Deuteronomy 6:4-5
Listen like children drinking in a story.
Listen like trees teaching the wind to sing.
Listen with your eyes, with your touch, with your insides.
May you nurture your listening heart,
open a quiet listening space,
and let the noisy world tumble in.
Is this not how healing happens to us?