Can I Finish Please???
Proverbs has a way of telling it like it is. Proverbs 18:13 speaks to something that many people struggle with. Here is what it says: He who answers a matter before he hears it, It is folly and shame to him. Here is a little test for you to try. The next time you are in a conversation with three or four people, count how many times the person who is talking is interrupted by one of the other people before he/she finishes what he/she is saying. This happens all the time. If we are not careful we assume that we know what the person is going to say and so we finish their thought, or just jump in with one of our own.
But Proverbs calls us to something different; something that expresses value to the one we are listening to. How often do we answer a matter before we really hear it? How often are we quick to offer a solution before we really understand the problem? How often do we pass judgment on someone without understanding the backstory? Proverbs reminds us to listen…really listen…really “hear” the words that are being said…then we can give an answer…or we just might realize that an answer isn’t needed and that listening is really the best gift we can give.