Brandy, Addy, and Grace,
“One of the most sincere forms of respect is actually listening to what another has to say.” – Bryant H. McGill
We live in probably one of the most disrespectful times in our country’s history. I believe it’s rooted in our lack of willingness to listen and attempt to appreciate the views of others, and its effect is frustration, anger, and hate that has created an ever-growing division among Americans and a level of physical and verbal violence unseen since the Civil War.
Notice I said that we should listen in an attempt to appreciate the views of others… that’s something that’s not popular today for a few reasons:
- We’re busy, and we won’t take the time to listen objectively, consider the facts, and make rational judgments. Instead, we’ve allowed the media to sell us dishonest sensationalism – not journalism.
- We fail to realize that appreciation doesn’t necessarily mean that we agree with and support the views of the other person. Instead, Appreciation:
- Indicates our recognition of anyone’s God-given inalienable right to hold views other than our own.
- Increases our understanding of why they hold those views.
- Opens the door for dialogue to resolve issues.
My Girls, if we would take the time to listen and show genuine desire to better understand others’ stories, two things would happen:
- They would have more respect for us because we took the time to listen, and they would be more likely to listen to us in return.
- We would have more respect for them because we took the time to listen and in doing so better understand the shoes in which they walk.
You know, as a Marine, I always had more respect for my enemy than I did the politician who put me before the enemy. This respect didn’t come from the enemy’s ability to end my life… no, instead it came from an appreciation of his moral courage to take a stand, even unto death, for something in which he believed (the fact that I didn’t agree with his cause was irrelevant).
My Girls, I Hope and Pray that you will take the time to listen and appreciate the views of others, remaining humble by remembering from where Jesus met and Rescued you, and always believing that His Love, which is shown to this Fallen World through you, can transform the heart of anyone… even the person sitting across from your views right now.
Challenge Question: Whose story should you take time to hear TODAY?