Would you repeat the question?
The need to be heard is universal. But does anyone really listen to anyone else?
Experts indicate how few of us have acquired a skill so important to the health of our relationships. “Most people are distracted, preoccupied or forgetful about 75% of the time we should be listening,” laments one authority. But it gets worse: “immediately after we listen to someone, we only recall about 50% of what they said. Unfortunately long–term we only remember 20% of what we hear.”
If you’ve ever been involved in a brief casual conversation and watched the other person’s eyes roam to something going on in another direction you know that this is true.
Without a doubt there are times when it’s hard to pay attention. I remember an 11-year old girl who was so excited about the movie she had just seen that she described and reenacted the whole film while I waited patiently for her to finish, straining to devote my attention to her.
Trusted trained professionals and close friends may be there for us when we need someone to talk to. Yet no one understands us like God. Whether through quiet prayers or fragments of thoughts that pass through your mind, His ears are finely tuned to the sounds of our lives. He hears and understands the very essence of what we long to communicate to him.
He is more than a good listener. He is the Great Listener. Jesus forever stands at the right hand of God, as our great High Priest, in whom “we can find mercy and grace in time of need.” He is available at all hours of the day and night. He is never annoyed or bothered by our presence. You can talk to Him as long as you desire and he will never be bored or distracted or irritated.
He is listening even when we are not communicating with Him directly. He laughs at the subtle joke you utter under your breath that others do not get. He hears things like the expressions of thanks in your sigh of relief when a police officer hiding under an overpass overlooks you exceeding the speed limit.
The Great Listener invites you can come to Him just as you are. You can come broken, or joyful. You can ask him anything and challenge him at every turn. You can pray when you are angry. You can even give God a piece of your mind. Yes, you can even scream at him if you have to (you should probably do this in private to avoid frightening those around you.)
You can talk to God about anything. There is nothing in your life that you cannot share with Him because it is impossible to shock or surprise him. He holds every hope, dream and challenge you face in the palm of his hand. Nothing escapes Him.
There is no greater listener than Jesus because there is no greater friend. Jesus said it best, “Greater love has no one than this, who will lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13).