Listening, Hearing, Interpreting, Responding…

Yesterday’s local paper included a letter from David from Lowestoft:

‘I am an elderly man with a hearing disability… I rang the audiology department at James Paget Hospital and was shocked to learn that ear trumpets are no longer available from the NHS. Instead something called digital hearing aids have been introduced. Digital? I thought, ‘How does sticking my fingers in my ears help my hearing?…’’

Previously David was listening but his hearing was deteriorating. Now, with his new hearing aids, his hearing is restored.

Musing… The people I meet each day… I need to listen carefully to what they say…and hear what they’re saying…

Yesterday I was chatting to Jim. Jim’s 79. He was talking about his wife. ‘I’ve learnt that whatever she suggests I should do, the answer is always, ‘Yes, dear, I’ll do it.’’ Jim often says, ‘Happy wife, happy life…’

Musing… It’s not just about listening and hearing but interpreting and responding appropriately…

Later I was chatting to Pete. I watched Pete’s hands shaking – like my Gran with Parkinson’s Disease used to. Pete spent too many years taking drugs and is now suffering the consequences. He’s only 39.

Pete had heard about the dangers of drugs but other voices influenced him…

Musing… There are other voices beyond the sounds that I hear. I need to listen for and hear emotional, psychological, cultural, spiritual voices… that require more careful interpretation and responses…

Reading again the story of Samuel this morning. In the night God calls, ‘Samuel, Samuel.’ He thinks the old priest Eli is calling him. He’s heard and listened… but he needs Eli’s wisdom to recognise that he is hearing God’s voice…

Musing… My Christian faith describes a God who is not only present with me but speaks to me

I need… the stillness to listen in a noisy world. … the perception to hear and recognise God’s voice… the insight to interpret what’s been said… the wisdom to know how I should then respond…  

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