Read: Mark 9:2–8

This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him! Mark 9:7b

Listening tends not to be a relational strength for most of us. Action, problem solving, and hard work may come naturally to us, while being silent, listening, and paying attention during conversation can be our Achilles’ heel. Yet listening is the key to developing healthy, meaningful, and intimate relationships. We can’t learn unless we listen. We can’t really love another unless we listen. We can’t effectively lead others unless we listen.

If we want strong relationships with our spouses and enduring relationships with our children, we must listen to them. Likewise, if we want a meaningful relationship with God, we must listen to Jesus. How are we to listen to Jesus? Talk less. Read the Gospels more. Pray often. Worship. If we make listening our best work, all our relationships will grow and thrive.

Whom do you need to set aside some time to listen to this week?

Lord, I like to talk. I like to speak my mind. I like to hear my voice above others. Can it really surprise me that my relationships seem hollow at times? Help me to listen. Help me to be attentive to those around me. Help me to be silent so that I can hear Your voice speaking to me. Teach me to truly listen to those around me so that my relationships grow in depth and meaning. In Your name, I pray. AMEN.