Late Night Listen

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Photo by Roland Kay-Smith on Unsplash

We watched the Prime Day Concert with Taylor Swift from New York. Jane Lynch was the host, and other artists I had not heard of preceded Taylor.

After I took a shower I was inspired to write, so I took up my keyboard and typed away. I wrote earlier on my new LinkedIn blog because as you know my day job is entrepreneur as a business owner in the residential cleaning industry. I had two cups of coffee with a new customer, so that’s part of the reason the wheels are still turning, and my mask isn’t on my face. I use a CPAP every night because I have sleep apnea. I just got a new one because the old one’s humidifier broke, and I was tired of waking up with a dry throat and nose. It’s much better now.

Writing is such a funny thing. Over on LinkedIn I try to add value as I incorporate John Maxwell’s advice in the books I’ve read. Pardon me if I’m repeating myself, but the two books by John Maxwell that are impacting me right now are Intentional Living and Developing The Leader Within You. Both of them have been rocking my world, and I’m using the principles in them to become more the person I want to be as I plan, work and dream about what I want my business to be. Those books are even bigger than career because I can apply the truth found within them to my relationship with my wife and daughter. I got Intentional Living from an event with the Old Hickory Chamber of Commerce sponsored by WayFM, and Taft Ayers gave us all a copy of it on May 30. It has literally turned my life around, and it’s giving me focus as I type this very sentence.

Change is an inward dynamic that has to happen if you want to be intentional about leading or simply being with other people. What better place to begin than with my own family. I’m slowly learning that people are indeed our greatest resource, and I don’t mean we use each other to leverage our own agenda or assuage our needy demands. I remember years ago hearing my mentor Landon Saunders say there is nothing more important than a single human being. That’s what I’m getting at, and I think my daily grind is showing me just that. When we focus on the person in front of us at any given moment we are transferring value that makes that person feel love. There’s no greater good. Obviously the greatest good is to love God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength, but I think a huge part of that is giving your undivided attention to the person in front of you. Listening, looking at the person across from you in the eye is becoming a lost art, and we have got to recover it. Nothing can be won by force what can only be won by submission, so I propose we go back to the inward change thing. You can’t change anyone. We label, name call and get angry, but like T. Swift croons, we need to “calm down.”

There’s a lot of worked up people out there, and I’m one of them, but when I realize and acknowledge the eternal value of one human being I am giving into eternity. My former pastor Terry Smith was a master at this. He can look deep into your eyes, and say more in silence than some can say during an entire meal. Jesus was the same way. There’s a time for dramatic outrage, but I think most of the time we are too loud for anyone to hear the Father.

I’ve never heard our Father audibly. I’m not discrediting you if you say you have. That’s wonderful. God speaks to all of us differently, and your experience might be different than mine. That doesn’t make you right and me wrong. He’s big enough that He has that kind of power.

I will write that if you’re constantly on your smart phone that you are missing out on what is going on all around you. Put the damn thing down. Take out the ear buds so you can hear others talk. I like music as much as the next guy or gal, but silence can be golden, and conversation with another human being can be life changing. Give it a try.

Continue working hard at your dreams. I’m not going to stop either, but for the love of human beings look that barista in the eye and listen to her without looking down at your phone.

We’ve all been betrayed by others, but we’ve also been deeply loved by others.

You can’t be deeply loved if you aren’t willing to look someone in the eye and really listen.

I love you guys!

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