What we listen to can affect us in many ways.
Everywhere I go my ears tune in to something. At the busy shopping center, so many people are passing by. Kids are shouting. People laughing. Babies crying. Two friends have their heads together, but I hear their words . . . “Well, the one on sale at Nordstrom’s is really pretty.” Some things I hear make me happy—a father’s telling his child, “You’re a good boy!” Other things make me sad—a couple exchanging unpleasant words.
My school is such a crowded place from the minute the first bell rings in the morning. Students shout greetings as they hurry from class to class, bumping one another in the halls. I hear swear words from some, apologies from others. Everywhere I go I hear good language and bad. But I can tune out what I don’t want to hear.
I don’t always remember everything I hear. Sometimes Mom or Dad tells me to do something and I forget all about it. Or someone tells me a joke and I can remember all of it except the punch line. Even in class my teacher likes us to take notes so we can review what he says. I think what we hear is very important. Sometimes I pray, “Help me, God, to hear and remember the things that You would have me keep in my mind and heart.”
Sometimes people say things that aren’t true. In class the other day, Bentlee told me that Weston stole the clothes he is wearing. I’ve been told unkind things about my friends before. I’m glad I don’t have to believe everything I hear.
Walking home from school, I can hear someone’s loud stereo. That rock music really pounds into my head. And what are the words to that music? When I listen to them, I don’t like them. They are trying to make a lot of things sound good that I know God doesn’t like—drugs and alcohol and immoral behavior. The things we hear can pollute our minds to the point we can hardly think any clean thought. But the words from good songs will linger in our minds too. And as we learn them, the meaning gets into our hearts.
There is so much I hear all week at school and around town that I don’t like, but there is a place I can go to hear good things—my church. Sometimes, though, I only listen with my ears so I really don’t understand what I’m hearing. I need God to help me really listen so that I will remember it. Then, when I need help with the problems that come into my life, the answer will be in my heart, ready to use.
Every time I go to church I hear more about how to live as a Christian. Some of the things I hear make me squirm in my seat because the words get to me—like the Easter theme we’ve been studying this month. For me to hear that Jesus died on the Cross because He loved me so much makes me feel that I should be doing more for Him. I guess that feeling in my heart is the way Jesus lets me know what He wants me to do. I realize I need to read my Bible and pray more often. That helps me stay strong as a Christian, and to be more aware of the kinds of things I should and shouldn’t listen to.
I read in the Bible that if I hear the words of God and do them, I am like a wise man who built his house on a rock. When the storms came and the winds blew, his house didn’t fall, because it was built on a solid foundation. If I listen and do what God tells me, I have a strong foundation for my spiritual building. If I don’t listen and obey, I am like the foolish man. He built his house on the sand and when the storm came, his house fell.
“Lord, help my ears to always be open to your words so I can be my very best for You.”