In ancient Greece it was customary for peddlers who walked the streets with
their wares to cry out, "What do you lack?" The idea was to let people know they
were in the vicinity, and also rouse the curiosity of the people. Coming out of
their houses they would want to know what the peddler was selling. It might be
something they lacked and needed, or simply something they desired.
What do you lack? We may have sight and hearing, but what do we lack? Take an honest inventory of yourself. Have you found contentment? Are you close enough to God to receive his guidance and strength? Have you secured peace of heart and peace of mind, invaluable assets in life? Deciding what we lack is the first step in securing it. Christ can fulfill our needs -- needs that are to some extent physical, but, more so, the deepest needs of heart, mind, and soul.
The man in Mark 7 lacked the physical ability to hear. But many of us lack the spiritual ability to hear. We suffer a kind of a spiritual deafness. The affliction of not listening to people, or, to put it another way, the affliction of physically listening to people, yet failing to comprehend, to understand, and come to grips with what they are saying, is a plague upon the Church. For, you see, it is possible to listen to a person, yet fail to really hear them.
Listening is a skill. It is something that can be acquired. I don't think it is at all an exaggeration to say that you could have no greater impact upon your world then by closing your lips and opening your ears. How can we become better listeners? Let's take a look at . . .
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