Lets take a little break from the allegory Pilgrim's Progress.
and talk about the differences between listening and simply hearing.
I guess some contrasts about the differences between the two would be in order:
1. If you listen to another you will take the time to enter into their world, to experience their hurts, pains, sorrows, as well as their joys.
2. If you just simply hear another you will never take the time to enter into their world, you just simply hear their words, and usually are thinking ahead of what they are saying chopping at the bit to start talking.
3. Listening is intentional
4. Hearing is automatic
A closing thought on listening, author James Sullivan in his book The Good Listener tells his readers that listening is the friend of intimacy.
Think of how many marriages, friendships, and relationships are so very shallow due to the lack of real intentional listening.
Next blog post I will show the six steps that take place whenever we communicate. This is a fascinating observation from H. Norman Wright's book on Communication: Key To Your Marriage.