Do You Listen To and Care About Others?

Don’t you feel foolish after spending time explaining your deepest feelings, only to find out that your audience were either not paying attention to you, or could care less about your problems? In our Scripture, Jesus shared how one of His closest allies would betray Him. Instead of the disciples feeling apathy for Jesus and looking for ways to love on Him, they instead started bickering among themselves about their personal interests. Are you guilty of this? Let’s try to allow the Word deep within us as we think on these things today?

DATE POSTED Wednesday, 2021-10-13
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Luke 22:21-24
TRANSLATION: Contemporary English Version (CEV)

BIBLE TEXT: 21 The one who will betray me is here at the table with me! 22 The Son of Man will die in the way that has been decided for him, but it will be terrible for the one who betrays him!” 23 Then the apostles started arguing about who would ever do such a thing.
24 The apostles got into an argument about which one of them was the greatest. 

APPLICATION: There are times when we share from the heart, and instead of our friends showing how much they care, instead they immediately start up a new conversation, perhaps even with other people in our circle. Kind of like, totally changing the subject. It’s enough for us to throw our hands up as a sign of not even bothering to repeat our words or ask for help from our friends. So how should this impact us? I believe that we could expect to be treated, as we treat others. But if God directs us to share freely with those in our circle, we must strive to overlook them ignoring us. I get the impression that the disciples were acting like our friends mentioned in the above scenario. Think about it. Jesus was intimately sharing with them what He knew would be happening to Him over the coming days, and instead of compassion for their Lord, it seemed like they got in to arguing over different matters that they felt were important. First, over who of their bunch might be the one who would betray Jesus, and this could be somewhat related to what Jesus said, but secondly – who might be the greatest among them, which had absolutely nothing to do with Jesus’ betrayal, death and resurrection. Friends, it is so important that we listen to what others are saying, and also to what they may not be saying but trying to inform us about. I know the later part of what I just shared might sound confusing, but often friends who are considering suicide will speak in riddles to give us tips about what they are planning, but unless we are listening closely and looking straight at them to see the pain in their eyes, we may not receive their message and be able to help them overcome danger or hurt to themselves. A tender, compassionate heart that shows someone that you truly care, could possibly help a friend completely turn from destruction, to feeling cared for and loved. Hearing later that someone gave in to their temptation because they thought that no one cared, is an awful feeling to live with. I pray that you not only love people with your whole heart, but that they know you care, love and respect them. Don’t be distracted while a friend is talking, lean in and let them know that you care enough to listen and care about them. Be the eyes, hands and feet of Jesus while also having His heart – a heart for others who need Jesus. Our Lord said that He preferred that none would perish, but instead have eternal life. You could be a part of this great mission of our King!

BLESSING(S) NOTED: Jesus loved and cared enough about His disciples that He didn’t want them to be caught unaware. Be sure that others know how much you care for them!

PRAYER: Lord, You not only showed us on the cross how much You love us, but You also show us every day that You care about us and especially about our soul’s condition. Please tender hearts today that they will find rest in knowing the love of our Savior who not only hears our cry for help, but also knows the pain we feel and the heart that cries out for love and attention. In our attempts to be just like Jesus, we must also show that caring attitude towards others, for often they are reaching out for help and comfort. Please forgive us Lord when our hearts are hardened and callous towards the needs of others. Because we are ‘tough’ and seasoned in life’s ups and downs, we often lose compassion for others who battle with the downside of these things and worry incessantly. Forgive us Lord when we drive others away, for we are often showing that that You don’t care. As a child of the King, may we always represent You well, and show the world how much You first loved us and that You continue to care about our eternal future. The truth is that ’but for the grace of God, we too could be hurting and in need of friends who truly love and care about us. It’s all about You Lord, and if we miss that while in the presence of our friends, we have just missed an opportunity to show them Jesus. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

On Visiting The Sick and Shut-Ins – Listen!

For those considering a visit to a sick friend, a shut-in or hospitalized, I would challenge you today with the words of Job, please don’t fill the room with chatter but listen to the person. You are visiting to help them feel better, this might very well be best served by listening to them. This reminds me of our times with God, is that time spent mostly allowing yourself time to unload, or do you give yourself time to listen to God?

Monday, 2019-05-13

Bible Reference: Job 13:5-6
Translation: New Century Version (NCV)

Bible Text: 
I wish you would just stop talking;
    then you would really be wise!
Listen to my argument,
    and hear the pleading of my lips.

OBSERVATION: For those considering a visit to a sick friend, a shut-in or hospitalized, I would challenge you today with the words of Job, please don’t fill the room with chatter but listen to the person. You are visiting to help them feel better, this might very well be best served by listening to them. This reminds me of our times with God, is that time spent mostly allowing yourself time to unload, or do you give yourself time to listen to God?

APPLICATION:  Ever have someone visit you and they don’t stop talking long enough for you to get a word in about how you are really feeling? Frustrating, isn’t it? I’ve been on both sides, so I believe I can identify with Job’s friends and with Job. As the visitor, we tend to feel like it is our responsibility to visit and make the person feel better. So we gather information about the person, then we either build up a wall of defense, just in case they decide to tear us apart, or we load up our minds with what we think they need mentally to help them feel better. As the sick or hurting person, Job in this case, we need someone that we can talk with and possibly identify with us. So if the visitor would just listen and nod their head occasionally to show they are listening or identifying with us, we would feel like we are not alone in our struggle. The last thing we need is a visitor, friend, pastor, elder or deacon, to visit and beat up on us about what we should have done, or how another church member never overcame the illness that they had similar to ours. We don’t want false hope, because although sick, we can quickly see through lies or false pretenses. Fortunately Job listened to all his friends had to say, but now he is lashing back at them. A visit to the unknown, and this would include a visit to a friend or fellow church member, is like walking into the unknown. Pray and ask God for wisdom, a listening ear and a kind word to encourage the person with. Remember, the sick person has been shut up in a room all day and needs someone to just listen to all they’ve been thinking about. Ask God to take away your desire to make them feel better with unending talk. There may be stuff the sick person would lay on the visitor that they want you to pray for and possibly help them find ways to deal with, like family matters or unresolved differences or best of all, to know Jesus personally! If we don’t listen, we will leave without knowing the heart of the one we visited!

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, in Your precious and wonderful name, I ask that You humble us to listen more and speak less. You are the designer and maker of each person, so You know how prone we are to build ourselves up and show off our knowledge and our experiences, yet You placed us here on earth to worship and praise You, and to be a blessing to others. Please help us to get off our ‘soap boxes’ and to show humility in all things, like You did, especially in our dealings with others. Yes, we may have something important to add to a conversation, but I know that we need to be more like You and place You at the very top, or leader of all things, then place others before ourselves. No matter how uneducated the other person is, they are a valued child of our King, please help us to always bear that in mind and learn from them and their experiences. As You lead us with the right words to say, may we be obedient and loving in sharing, so that You may ultimately receive honor and praise from all involved. We can only accomplish this with Your guidance and Your help dear Lord, so I ask this in Your powerful, yet loving name, Jesus my Lord. AMEN!