Sunday, March 15, 2015
“My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry” James 1:19 (NIV)
I spent the entire afternoon Saturday cleaning the inside of my car. Took everything out, vacuumed, scrubbed, cleaned the windows. As happens in the Snowbelt, the interior of my car was abysmal from salt, dirt, dog hair, lost French fries, spilled milkshakes.
My body was half outside and half on the floor of the driver’s seat. I was debating if I was getting out of control by actually washing off the foot pedals, when it dawned on me that the gas pedal is way smaller than the brake pedal.
Why would that be? Of course, your foot is on the gas more than on the brake and when you need to find the brake pedal, it needs to be big enough to hit with your foot without taking your eyes off the road to find it. Only a few accidents are avoided by hitting the gas; in general accidents are prevented by slamming on the brakes.
I’ve been trying to memorize Bible passages and the one above has been on my desk this week. “Quick to listen, slow to speak”. The speaking pedal should be small, while the listening pedal should be large. The listening pedal needs to be easy to find, easy to use because it prevents many an accident, keeps you safe, helps others. The speaking pedal? It maybe gets you where you want to go, but you have to be able to stop once you get there!
Dear Lord, God in Heaven, help me to remember to think before I speak and more importantly to listen before I speak. Help me to put the needs of my brothers and sisters ahead of mine and to know that I must listen for those needs first. Amen