When someone goes low, we go lower. They call us a name, we call them a couple names. They disagree with us and we’ll immediately tell them off, rather than hearing their side of the story.
But James 1:19 tells us we must be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.
Often, we’re so focused on ourselves and how we feel, that we forget the individual on the other end of the fight has feelings as well. We have to control our anger; rather than immediately lashing out at someone in defense of our position, take time to listen and understand where they are coming from. The difference between an argument and a civilized conversation is listening.
If we wouldn’t be so self-centered, and would lavish some of our care and concern on others the way we do ourselves (Philippians 2:4), drawn out grudges could be avoided, and dividing disagreements wouldn’t be an everyday thing.
And when you take time to listen, your relationships will be better—whether platonic, romantic, or spiritual. You have to be able to get out of your feelings and hear the other side, because, believe it or not, you’re not always right.
Listen to your friends, give them a say; pay attention to your spouse. Don’t ignore them because you think you’re in the right. Tune your ear to God’s voice, instead of ignoring His call because you feel neither ready nor up to doing what He said.
Life is easier when you listen, on all accounts.