“Listen to my instruction and be wise; don’t ignore it.”
– Proverbs 9:33
“Are you even listening to me?” That has to be one of the most frequently asked questions by coaches of their athletes. Coaches make a living giving instructions and critiquing an athlete’s execution. We get frustrated when we think our players aren’t focusing on what we’re trying to tell them. We continuously ask questions to keep them alert and on task. All that is good, but I’ve learned over the years that there’s a huge difference between talking to your athletes and talking with your athletes. Talking “to” an athlete is a one-sided conversation, but talking “with” an athlete involves both the coach and the player. It’s a two-sided conversation that usually indicates a relationship exists. I think coaches that talk with their players have a higher level of success.
I’ve got to think God asks the “are you even listening to me” question frequently too! We are all capable of doing some really dumb things. God gives us His best coaching through the Word. The Bible clearly guides us if we are looking for the perfect path to follow. I don’t know if God gets frustrated, but I’m sure He is saddened by our constant failure to follow his instructions. Why don’t we listen? Maybe it’s because we have chosen to engage in a one-sided conversation. We have chosen to talk “to” God instead of talking “with” God. Talking with God means a relationship exists and it’s a two-way street. When the conversation is two-sided, we not only talk, we listen. When we choose this approach, I’m thinking our level of success in this world will improve dramatically.
Lord, thank You for the opportunity to talk with You today. Help me to listen and clearly hear Your wise instruction. Amen.