Last week I had interactions with a few individuals who displayed a very one-sided perspective towards life. It made for some uncomfortable discussions and challenged me to think about who I am as I interact with others. I’ve talked about my love of perspective many times before, because I’ve met too many people like these 3 individuals whose lives could have been so very (amazingly) different if they were just willing to look a little farther, ask another question, listen a little better or not take things as fact before considering their validity. Anytime I’m faced with a problem or opportunity I get excited because it means that I get to think about what could be, what could be done differently and make a list of all the different options that could be. They’re not all good options but the fact is that there are very few times that I haven’t been able to come up with at least one other option or way of seeing things than was initially presented.
I’ve learned that we’re too quick to jump, too stuck in our beliefs and assumptions, and that we think we have to be right and can’t be wrong to see these other options often. If we had just taken 30 extra seconds to really read it, to really think things through, to really listen to what the other person was trying to tell us things would have been very different.
Last week reminded me how much credit we need to give God for the patience He has with us when we don’t listen to what He’s told us many times, as well as His willingness to give us second and third tries after we’ve failed, not to mention that if we had listened the first or second time He worked through a challenge or lesson with us that we wouldn’t be in the situation we found ourselves in yet again. This week I encourage you to approach challenges with more patience and take the time to listen when someone speaks, you’ll have a better chance of avoiding pain and suffering in the future if you do!
“Oh, that you had listened to my commands! Then you would have had peace flowing like a gentle river and righteousness rolling over you like waves in the sea.” Isaiah 48:18