I was watching a rerun of a favourite TV show, and was reminded of the power of taking a minute to really listen to someone. Of stopping, asking, and really listening to what they have to say. That moment can change everything for someone.
This is something I've seen over and over as I've been reading through the Gospel of Mark. Jesus continually stopped to talk to people. To hear their stories. To discover their needs. To really care about them as a person.
In our busy lives it can be easy to just run on to the next thing we need to do. To just make assumptions about someone based on what we see at a glance or hear in passing. Or to decide we know best, even if we have no idea what the real story is.
But, when we take the time we need to really listen to other people, it can change everything for them and for us. It can change our entire perspective on the person. We discover things that make the person who they, that explain why they're acting a certain way.
It slows our lives down to do this. We have to be willing to be interrupted by God, even when it seems inconvenient. We have to be okay with being stopped in our plans, with having them changed.
But, it leads to a much fuller life when we do this. Both for us, and for the people we take the time to really listen to.
A life that Jesus modeled for us when He was on earth.
A life that matters beyond us.
A life that we were created for.