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Marital Moments

In  this section of  Marital Moments we begin by looking once again at James 1:19 There  the  Bible  says  "Let every man be  swift to hear,  slow  to  speak,  slow to wrath."   The  Word of  God  boldly points out that we should always be  ready to listen.  In  fact,  listening  must be our top priority. This  thought  brings us  to  this important truth: "Listening Must Not Be Interrupted Except For Clarification."  When I am sincerely listening to my mate, then I have no desire to interrupt her.  I patiently  and lovingly  listen to her with all my heart.  I  simply  let her talk.  I give her  the courtesy  of expressing  her  point of view.  We would  not knowingly and carelessly step on our  wife's toes, but  to often we  step on  their ideals,  thoughts, and  words without a thought or care about what that does to her.  Constant  inter- ruptions say you have no value.  Your words are unimportant.  You are not worth hearing.  You  are not  important enough for  me to be  talking  too.  You  are also conveying  that  your  words and  thoughts  have  more value, that she should stop talking  and  let  you  speak  for  you  are far  more  important  than she  is at  that moment.  What a tragic mistake. How many couple's suffer in silence because they are not  given the freedom of expressing,  without  interruption,  their thoughts and feelings?  How much happier our homes would be  if only we would let our spouse speak freely without  constantly interrupting.   However,  there are occasions when something  is said  that  we don't  understand.  Conveying  one's  heart  to  another person, even our spouse,  is not  always easy.  Therefore,  misunderstanding is just as  possible as  understanding. This is where we need clarification.  At  this  time  a gentile interruption is needed to  glean the necessary information that  is required to fully and completely understand what is being said.  These "interruptions"  must be done  with a  kind and gracious attitude.  It must be done in a  non-threatening way that  lets  the  other one  know that  you  are truly  seeking  only to understand.  A simply question asked,  a brief statement made,  or an affirmation of love is all that is needed to gain clarification.   In  seeking to understand,  you must  never change the subject.   Let  her continue  on with  her  thoughts and statements.  Keep  your question to a minimum making them both short,  simple,  and to the point.   If  real communication is taking place,  then you will have time later on to give your views and opinions.  For the time being,  just be content to  let her state her thoughts and give  her the  simple  luxury of  knowing that you  are  giving  her  your  undivided attention.  This approach pays great dividends.   Happy is the marriage where each spouse  allows the  other the  wonderful  opportunity of  expressing  their  thoughts without the other's critical and sarcastic interruptions.  Remember, "Listening Must Not Be Interrupted Except For Clarification."

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