I have always been haunted by the insight that: Neighbors & Wisemen

“The voice of God is often found in the mouth of a friend”.

I need so much grace. I require so much help in the things of life. I need others … and I don’t always like that.

I am blogging my way through Neighbors and Wisemen for Lent. I was suddenly without a computer on my weekend retreat so I apologize for the delay on this post.  

Tony tells the story of a man who was very different from him in chapter 12. This many was from a different region of the country. He had a different skin color, had walked a different road, and lived a different life than Tony. He struggled with different things and experienced the world in a different way.

He, like the woman in the previous chapter, had something to teach Tony. These things are often hard to hear and even tougher to receive. There is often a translation that is needed.

Too often the burden of translation falls to the one doing the speaking. The responsibility to ‘say it in a way the other person can hear’.  I get the most of the time.

There are other times, however, when the energy of translating falls to the one who needs to hear so badly.

The problem is that we often don’t recognize that it is us who are in such a need. It is a deadly little dance of dullness and deafness.

This past weekend I was spending time with a church community who is not from my area. They are not of my same tradition. They are a diverse community – economically, educationally, and generationally.

How do we hear from people who are a different age, color, and tradition than us?

Why is it so hard to listen and receive from those whose experience is so different from yours? When there is a gap in age, experience, education, economics, and so many other variables … why is that so hard to bridge sometimes?

Why is it so difficult to bridge that gap and  to hear the word of the Lord in the mouth of someone else … especially when we need it so badly?

I would love to hear your thoughts.