FROM THE PULPIT: Be quick to listen, slow to speak

Published: Tuesday, February 12, 2013 at 04:10 PM.

Be quick to listen and slow to speak.

In other words, don’t jump to conclusions.

Gather all the facts before giving an answer or offering an opinion. Jumping to conclusions perpetuates the miscommunication. It causes anger to flash and lash out. This does not produce the righteousness God desires.

Instead, listen carefully.

Examine why something upset you. Perhaps a greater good can come from a calm and gentle response.

For example, Alice Lee Humphreys, in her book "Angels in Pinafores," recalls her experiences as a first-grade teacher. She tells about one little girl who came to school one winter day wearing a beautiful white angora beret with white mittens and a matching muff. As she was coming through the door, a mischievous little boy grabbed the white muff and threw it in the mud.

After disciplining the little boy, the teacher sought to comfort the girl. Brushing the mud off her soiled muff, the little girl looked up at the teacher and said in a quiet and responsible manner, “Sometime I must take a day off and tell him about God.”

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