A conversational pace?

By Dave Henning / July 4, 2023

“Are you living at a conversational pace?  And when you have a conversation, do you do more talking or listening? . . .  Here’s a thought: God gave us two ears and one mouth — use them in that proportion. . . .  Please, like listening, is others-focused.”- Mark Batterson

“He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.”- Jim Elliot

In Chapter 1 (“There You Are”) of Please Sorry Thanks, Mark Batterson cites his spiritual father, Dick Foth.  Foth states that two kinds of people exist in the world.  The first kind of person enters a room and internally announces, Here I am.  Consequently, their ego barely fits through the door.

However, the second type of person walks into a room and internally announces, There you are.  Hence, they check their ego at the door.  Their objective centers on adding value.  So, it’s all about everyone else.

Certainly, Pastor Batterson, notes, the famous apologist Francis Schaeffer understood the value of listening.  In fact, his wife Edith once described Francis as having a ministry of conversation.

Also, Mark informs us, on average Teddy Roosevelt read a book a day.  While serving as president!  Because Roosevelt possessed a holy curiosity about God’s creation.  In addition, Roosevelt prepared for conversations and guest by doing his homework.  So, Pastor Batterson wonders, what if we approached relationships the same way?

In conclusion, Mark cites author and professor Adam Grant, who made a distinction between givers and takers.  Takers’ Grant observed:

  • possess a scarcity mindset.
  • tend to self-focus: Here I am.
  • live in a dog-eat-dog world; self- interest = their primary interest.
  • believe the person with the most toys at the end wins.

But givers, on the other hand:

  • possess an abundance mindset.
  • see their objective as adding value to others: There you are.
  • set the gold standard when it comes to generosity.
  • empower others; put them in the captain’s chair.

Today’s question: What helps you live at a conversational pace?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Rudders of desting – pronouns”

About the author

Dave Henning

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