Hearing,  Listening or “Paying” Attention? 

Someone might be asking questions, so many questions about the above title of this very post. The nature of the heart has been placed under careful analysis with aim of finding how it helps in our daily interactions with people and things. 

The issue today is that; I want to make clear the meaning of the three actions mentioned above, that we might choose from amongst them, what we will practice from this moment. 

The act of hearing is a very important act that a man must be able to practice. It is a great gift that the holy Spirit can bless you with. Moreso,  there is another aspect,  a more basic aspect of hearing and that is hearing from people around us. 

As much as, hearing is very great,  it is not advantageous. Why? Because,  you can never until there is a sound loud enough to reach your hearing senses. That is why,  whenever you say,  “I heard” it is almost referring to something you didn’t provoke,  something you didn’t ask to hear, something you didn’t force out of somebody or something. When a prophet says he heard, most of the time,  he is referring to something that sound in the spirit realm without him asking for that sound. 

Though it is good to hear, your hearing ability is limited to what the sound reveals to your senses. 

In relationships, we cannot survive with just hearing. You cannot live on hearing when you want to thrive with your partner in a relationship. It is not always that your partner is ready to talk about what is bothering them, so if you’re relying on hearing,  you might not even hear at all! 

Sometimes,  because we do not find out the truth,  but we just want to practice hearing;  those who often want to talk,  are those who bring us the destructive hearsays. Hearing is random. Whatever sound is made,  if you’re not deaf, you’ll hear. Everyone can hear too. Hearing is not special. 

Listening,  the whole point of listening could sound as the most challenging thing ever. Why do you listen? Listening is being clever to sound that is being produced. When you listen,  you are ready to pick up sounds produced. But why do you listen? 

Some people listen because they really want to reply to what is being said. Some listen because of other funny reasons,  while others do so for good reasons. Nevertheless,  there is some aspect of hearing you won’t get until you listen! 

Bible says we should be quick to listen. This indicates to us that we should make it our priority to listen to sound projected to us. Even in class,  we can listen for the purposes of passing our exams. That’s pathetic! Turns out listening is also not perfect. 

Proverbs  4:1  Hear, ye children, the instruction of a father, and attend to know understanding.

From the above verse,  we are to hear the instruction of a Father. The whole of being told to hear suggests that we should listen to a father,  to hear what his instructions are.  The second part of the verse says we should attend to know understanding. 

Paying attention, the bible says we should attend to know understanding. Most people are listen and hearing things that they still don’t understand yet. Why?  Because they’re not ‘paying’ attention. 

The word paying is the verb and attention is the price. When we pay attention,  everytime we pay attention,  we actually pay a price. We pay a price of getting every other thing off our minds and giving our entire reasoning ability into what we are examining. 

When you pay attention,  you grab information that is not necessarily transmitted through sound. Most truths are not found by hearing,  because the most important information are mostly not heard but read. Read actions,  gestures, nature, behaviours and character. You will know people and their capabilities very well if you are able to do that. 

Hearing is good,  listening is better but paying attention is the best. When your partner wants you to listen,  what they actually need is your attention. And though attention is expensive,  it’s the best price you can pay for another person’s heart! 


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