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The Practice of Listening to Understand

Updated: Mar 8, 2023

(Lenten Series)

What is good for mental health?

Listen to understand.

One example of how Jesus listened to understand can be found in the Gospel of Mark, chapter 10, verses 46-52.

In this story, Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem with his disciples when they passed through the town of Jericho.

As they were leaving the town, a blind man named Bartimaeus was sitting by the roadside begging. When he heard that Jesus was passing by, he began to shout, "Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!"

Many people in the crowd rebuked Bartimaeus and told him to be quiet, but Jesus stopped and said, "Call him." The crowd then called out to Bartimaeus and said, "Take heart; get up, he is calling you."

When Bartimaeus came to Jesus, Jesus asked him, "What do you want me to do for you?" Bartimaeus replied, "Rabbi, I want to see." Jesus then said to him, "Go, your faith has healed you." Immediately Bartimaeus received his sight and followed Jesus along the road.

In this story, Jesus demonstrated his willingness to listen to understand by stopping and paying attention to the cry of Bartimaeus, despite the objections of the crowd.

Instead of assuming that he knew what Bartimaeus wanted or needed, Jesus asked him directly, "What do you want me to do for you?"

This example shows how Jesus, valued and respected the perspective and needs of others, and how his active listening skills helped him to connect with those he encountered.

As a therapist, this is what we’re trained to do. This Lenten season, consider listening to understand. #ActiveListening#lent#Understanding#Empathy#Jesus#Compassion#Kindness#ListeningToUnderstand

(Repost: Instragram @shantelcdavis)

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