"So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath." James 1:19
Every road we drive on has a posted speed limit. It's there to keep us and others safe and accident free. If you have ever drove on the German Autobahn there isn't a speed limit in certain places. It's a place where you can't drive slow. However, with God speed is not always a requirement in this life.
We must be slow to speak, thinking first. We violate this principle often with our quick responses. It sometimes causes us to retract what we say. We also must be slow to become angry. Our anger usually exposes the weaknesses in us, not the shortcomings of another. Anger has a tendency to over-look the original error and turn startled faces in our direction.
To help us slow down, God tells us to listen at the outset, which gives us a full understanding of other people's circumstances. When we know what others are facing, trying to say, or get off their chest, we are more likely to respond with compassion - which may mean saying nothing at all. If we open our hearts and ears to not just hear, but listen, then it can be a learning experience.
Remember, you can't learn anything if you are talking. Only when you are listening.
Pastor Michael Garcia
Overseer and Pastor at First Assembly HOEN