Mat 11:15 He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
— Matthew 11:15
Are you thinking to yourself, “I have ears.”
That is good. That is step one. Dive a little deeper and we see that the second part of this statement read, “Let him hear.” This is a command, because ultimately, it is up to you who has ears for hearing, to choose to hear.
YOU HAVE A CHOICE TO LISTEN OR NOT!
Just because you perceive a sound does not mean that you are listening or discerning the message being spoken. It is crucial to understand this idea because it puts the onus on you to listen, thus, making it your responsibility. Does it make sense now, why Jesus says, “… let him hear.” ? He is beseeching the people to take responsibility to listen to His message.
From our previous post, Why its not just about what you say, but also about listening, we made the statement that listening and silent are spelled with the same letters, and they are actions that are related to each other. You cannot do one without the other. But imagine if there was a way, as the person delivering the message, to tilt the odds of the audience listening more effectively? Consider when Jesus makes some of His most important teachings – the feeding of the 5000 people, the last supper, and his first miracle is turning water into wine. In all of these instances, the audience was eating or drinking. Their mouths were silent while eating therefore, leaving their ears open for listening.
Let’s take these lessons to heart so we can become better listeners by taking responsibility for our choice, and learn how to make our audiences more attentive by silencing their mouths in an overt but still clever fashion.