“He That Has Ears To Hear; Let Them Hear”
Did you ever feel that no one is listening to you. You have good ideas to share, concerns to be addressed, developed your own opinion, but you don’t think anyone is listening or wants to listen. You feel isolation, rejection, and loneliness.
Often I hear loud and clear what church leadership believes, thinks, or dictates. We hear it from the pulpit, in private conversations, or in the bulletin or newsletter, but how does church leadership hear from their congregation. Do they need to? If the church is all about relationships, then it must not only speak, but also listen.
If the five fold is present in a congregation, multiple eyes and ears should be present if the five fold is a passion and point of view. The evangelist listens to the voice of the “street” to know how to be more effective in meeting the needs and addressing the lost. Not only does the sheep know their shepherd’s voice, but he knows theirs. The information a teacher expounds is not of importance if he just lectures or preaches, but a good teacher listens to his student(s), a process that helps him to measure his teaching effectiveness. A prophet majors in listening to the voice of God, craving its intimacy, but also needs to listen to the voice of the believers and see if it parallel’s God’s. Listening is critical to the apostle, for not only does he “over-see” the flock, but also “listens” to the many voices in the midst of the congregation. His gifting is to react to what he hears, leading the congregation towards the heart and voice of God in very practical ways.
As a person who loves to talk, I have had to learn the power of listening, even the power of silence. Being an extravert, it is so easy to express my thought, my opinion, my knowledge on a subject, but I am continually learning that “silence is truly golden” and listening a very powerful tool.
As a church we need not only to teach the believers under our care how to “hear” to voice of God, but also teach out leadership how to listen to the voices of the believers around them in their attempt to lead. “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.” It is a key to powerful leadership.