Dear Ones,
Hope you are having a good weekend. It is raining out now but not storming. This morning I baked cookies on a stick and cleaned the apartment before Kurt stopped by on his way home from the lake. Was so good to catch up.
. Devotions from Judy’s heart
  I’m quite sure we have all be in situations where one person does all the talking. We listen and listen and get weary of what may seem to be empty words and no chance to interject comments. Al and I remarked to each other, after getting together with a couple we hadn’t seen for a couple years… they never asked us one question but only talked about their own family. They went home never knowing more than what they came with.
   In talking we all must be careful that what we say and to guard our mouths for Jesus said in the Sermon on the Mount in Luke 6:45 (ESV), “For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” By our speech, others see what is hidden inside us…it spills out in our words, as well as, our actions. Our words should be truthful and humble and gentle and uplifting and not full of empty words and gossip. Let us not fall in love with the sound of our own voice!             
    I was reading what Michael Casey, a monk from Australia had to say of what a good conversationalist is. He doesn’t do all the talking but draws others out; he listens with empathy to what is said and appreciates where the other person comes from. He practices self-restraint and respects the one who is speaking. We may be surprised of what God can teach us through others, if we stop talking and listen.
    How about at church are we good listeners when the gospel is read or the pastor is preaching, are we really paying attention or is our mind elsewhere?
    If we are honest most of us need to listen more and speak less; perhaps that is why we have two ears and one mouth! We can hear what is being said when we stop talking and make room to welcome what others are saying.
 David said in Psalm 39:2-3 that he would guard his mouth with a muzzle so he would not sin with his tongue.
 Challenge for today: Be aware of when you interrupt others and listen to them with an open heart.
Blessings on your weekend and prayers and love, Judy