As I have gotten older my hearing has dimmed just a bit. When I am in a crowd or at a party sometimes all the talking sounds like the tide roaring in at the beach and I find myself tuning out of conversations while I politely smile and nod. A more serious problem with growing older is that it seems easier and easier for me to ignore advice. “I’ve heard it all before!” I think about a large variety of things. Maybe part of the problem is linked to information overload. I just can’t stand hearing another commercial about the latest diet, stress relief or vacation package. It is as if everyone is shouting and though their volume has increased, my hearing them has diminished.
But I begin to get into real trouble when that feeling of information overload begins to carry into my relationships. If before I begin a conversations I start out by thinking “Oh I know they won’t agree so why ask.” or “Do I really want to go through hearing their opinion again?”
The danger is that if we allow it, our ears will grow callouses over them so thick we won’t even be able to hear when God speaks. Often when Jesus told stories he ran into people who just like myself had grown a bit dull of hearing. He had a short but important bit of advice for us all today.
And He said to them, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear!” Mark 4:9
Remember that God gave us ears for listening. Our greatest challenge isn’t in finding some miraculous means of hearing from God such as angels or visions. Our greatest challenge is to remember it is more important to listen to those close to us to tell us the truth. Often God uses them as His still small voice. May we never be too old to listen to His advice!!