Friday, July 14, 2006

Listen--Lend an ear to family

"(Joseph's brothers)Speaking among themselves, they said, 'This has all happened because of what we did to Joseph long ago. We saw his terror and anguish and heard his pleadings, but we wouldn't listen.'" Gen 42:21 (TLB)

I think a lot of our problems are because people don't listen to our children. It is not always easy. They're not always so brilliant that you want to spend hours with them. But it is very important to listen to them. – Barbara Bush

I admire Barbara Bush. She raised some great children. Rather you agree with the politics of her sons or not, you have to agree that at least they have stepped up to the challenge of trying to make this a better world. I suspect that the time she spent listening had something to do with their being encouraged to pursue jobs of service to their country.

Children need to have good listeners in their lives. It's essential to their language development for starters. They need to learn how to use the volcabulary they collect, how to express their thoughts in sentences, how to sequence events for story telling. Later in life, in those dreaded teen years, families need to listen when their teens put down the ipods and actually talk. So many problems could be worked out in those young lives, and probably on their own, if they just had a good sounding board.

Being a good listener is being a good encourager. It gives your talker the courage to explore and solve problems.

(Copyright 2006 Karen Robbins)

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