Joy in Listening

“As cold water to a weary soul, So is good news from a far country.” Proverbs 25:25 (NKJV)

There is a friend of mine who lives on the other side of our country. We have been friends for years. I worked with her and her husband for many years, which deepened our friendship.

We have walked with each other through many difficult and dark times. We have laughed much together. We have wept with one another. We have screamed on roller coasters together. We have lived life together. She is family to me.

Next week Dale is teaching at our Wednesday night service. He has chosen his topic and wanted to be refreshed in some teachings from this friend of ours.

This morning they talked with each other. The phone was on speaker so he could take some notes and have his hands free to make references where needed. I sat in the living room listening to their conversation.

At first I was online scrolling through notifications. A normal part of my day. Soon, my attention went elsewhere. The voice on the other end of the line was drawing me in. The voice I know so well. As she spoke I was transported in memory back to a place where she taught and I listened.

The rhythm of her voice, the enthusiasm of the topic she was talking about. The excited exchange between Dale and her. How often did they do this and her husband and I just sat, drinking tea or coffee and smiled at each other, knowing they were sharing their hearts. The two of them both called to the same type of ministry.

Today, as I listened I was filled with joy and thankfulness. From this woman the Lord has taught me much. The gift she is from our Lord is a blessing too great to describe. The spontaneous joy we find when we are together.

Today my heart was filled to overflowing with the sound of a voice.


years ago I had someone tell me that the best way to learn is to teach. This was after being asked to teach a Sunday school class. I had never taught a Sunday school class, let alone actually read the Bible at that point in my life.

I trepidly started the class. Often I had to stop and ask one of the students questions. It wasn’t part of the lesson, but I knew this child knew more about the Bible than I did at that point. He was a third grader at the time. It was humbling, but in truth, I did start to learn by teaching.

Now, teaching Bible studies is one of my most favorite things to do. I enjoy the adventure of putting a lesson together and studying the material. I eagerly start and know each lesson in advance and am confident.

Until this current series I am doing. When asked to teach, I pray about the subject and it comes to mind and excitement begins to build in me. This time, I prayed as I always do, and the answer challenged me. I prayed some more. Same answer. I tried a third time, thinking I misheard the first two times. Wrong! Same answer. So, I acknowledged that I had heard and with deep breaths, I started to study.

Yes, one of the best ways to learn is to teach. I am learning so much with this study. It is bringing me out of my comfort zone. It is challenging me to lean on the Giver of all lessons in life. Together, the Lord and I are presenting this study. Actually, it is more Him than me.

Sundays hit me harder with this study. The class is on Monday mornings. So, come Sunday a mild panic sets in. Will I present this right? Do I have an actual grasp of the material? Am I comprehending this?

Yes, these are all questions that run through my mind on Sunday afternoons. The questions excite me. They stimulate my mind. The challenge me. This is all great stuff. Granted, the panic is not the best, but what it is teaching me is that I am learning with this lesson. I know without a doubt that this material has been picked out by the Lord, as it is something I wouldn’t have thought of. I am excited.

When the Lord challenges you, it’s a great adventure. He felt I was ready to be stretched. He wanted to teach me something new. I am learning through this teaching.

“The Lord says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.” Psalm 32:8 (NLT)