The Eyes Have It

Do we only hear what we want to hear?
Do we only hear what we want to hear? (YouTube)

People of influence must remain open to being influenced through active listening. The best tool for active listening is our eyes.

In Ezekiel 40, we read of the prophecy to rebuild Jerusalem and the temple. In this book we are also introduced to the characteristic of God, "Jehovah Shammah—The Lord is There." 

God gives us comfort by "being there." As leaders, we can learn plenty from this concept to "be there" when meeting with people sent by divine appointment.

We read in verse 4: "The man said to me, 'Son of man, look with your eyes, and hear with your ears, and set your heart on all that I shall show you. For you have been brought here to show it to you. Declare all that you see to the house of Israel.'"

If I am leading in an organization to which God sent me, then it's not a leap to claim that every meeting is an appointment set by God. It would be optimal if I could show up at the meeting with more than my body and smartphone.

If we listen with our eyes, perhaps we won't be so easily distracted. Our eyes will also help us to seek first to understand.

"Wisdom is principal; therefore get wisdom. And with all your getting, get understanding" (Prov. 4:7).

From a leader's perspective, our primary purpose of listening is to get understanding. Being understood, though important, is not a functional listening skill.

The goal of a servant leader is to listen for an opportunity to serve. The question, "How can I help this person?" will not be answered by talking.

"My sheep hear my voice" (John 10:27). But we only hear what we listen for.

We hear what we want to hear.

Dr. Steve Greene is the publisher and executive vice president—Media Group, Charisma Media. Sign up here for Dr. Greene's newsletters.

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