Summary: So let me ask you this question: Do you know how to listen to others---and, more importantly, to God?
A Woman Who Knew How to Listen
1. The Art of paying attention is becoming a lost art…
2. When the Pilgrims settled American, 2 hour sermons…
3. Thirty years ago, average attention span of adults 40 to 60 minutes
4. Now, down to 15 to 20; our entire society is becoming an attention deficit society---over stimulation of our senses…TV, music, etc..
5. With this decay, the ability to listen—really listen---has taken some hits.
6. Let me read this brief essay: L-6B
7. Although previous generations could pay attention for longer lengths of time, listeners—real listeners—have always been a minority.
MAIN IDEA: So let me ask you this question:
Do you know how to listen to others---and, more importantly, to God?
Few did in Jesus’ day.
I. Among the People Jesus Addressed, Many Heard, but Few Listened (Matt. 26:1-5, John 12:2-8)
A. His disciples did not really listen though He spoke of His coming death repeatedly…
(1) Passages in Matt. 16:21, 17:22; 20:18-19; and 26:1-2
(2) They heard WORDS, but did not grasp the meaning.
B. The Chief Priests Plotted, But Did Not Really Understand
Note a previous conversation in John 7:20-21
C. Mary (sister of Martha and Lazarus) Was the ONLY Believer Who Understood Jesus Was Going to Die (John 12:2-8)
II. What Made Mary Different?
1. She found TIME to listen (story of Mary & Martha); an eager learner…
---teacher honored for her aggressive motivation to learn…
---MARY was self-motivated, or, more accurately, Spirit motivated….
2. A matter of priority
3. Willingness to first UNLEARN to remove paradigm blindness
4. How can you make sure you are understanding? Summarize what you think they have said, “So you’re saying….”
III. The Ministry Mary Had Because She Had Listened
1. Ultimate act of WORHSIP
2. Had the honor of comforting, worshiping, and preparing CHRIST for the horrible Trauma that lay ahead in 2 days
PEOPLE WHO LISTEN CAN WORSHIP MORE DEEPLY AND BE USED MORE OF GOD; POOR LISTENERS LOSE MUCH OF WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN…
CONCLUSION: If You want to listen, you must realize you do not know it all, that new information is often wrapped among familiar information, and you must humbly and actively pay attention to the words spoken and the meaning behind them. Mary listened. And of Jesus closest friends, she was the only one who heard with understanding.