`My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry. – (James 1:19, NIV)
Post this at all the intersections, dear friends: Lead with your ears, follow up with your tongue, and let anger straggle along in the rear. – (James 1:19, MSG)
My dearest brothers and sisters, take this to heart: Be quick to listen, but slow to speak. And be slow to become angry. – (James 1:19, TPT)
Can you imagine if we all actually followed this charge? Misunderstandings would be quickly cleared up, and kindness would reign. When we choose to truly listen to understand rather than to respond, and take our time to respond carefully in love, anger dissipates. A heart that is quick to willingly listen in love has the opportunity to slow down and think before speaking. As we do this, anger does not flair up but rather only rises in spaces that are calling for our attention to change or remove. May we ever seek the Lord to lead us to listen intentionally and to respond slowly with His wisdom.
Brothers and sisters,
Let’s all do our part;
To listen in love,
And speak from the heart.
Be slow to anger,
Choose listen, be wise;
Allow the Lord’s love,
Let kindness arise.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You call us to listen first and be slow to speak. I imagine that is part of the reason that we have two ears and only one mouth. Thank You that You grant us the patience, wisdom and love to listen first and speak next after truly hearing one another. Forgive us for the times that we have given rise to anger and have spoken without listening.
© Shannon Elizabeth Grabrick and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present
God, hear my prayer; listen to the words of my mouth. – Psalm 54:2