Asking the Right Questions
Knowing what to say and when to say it is crucial. Through the years I’ve learned, it’s just as important, if not more important, to ask an intriguing question and listen attentively for an answer.
Being the talker that I am, I’m often way too anxious to insert my thoughts and opinions into a conversation. Attentive listening has always been a challenge for me. So, it takes an intentional effort on my part, to ask a question then sit back, remain quiet and listen for the answer. When I do, I’m regularly amazed at how much I learn and how it incentivizes the other person to open up and express their feelings.
A thought-provoking question is more effective than a well-rehearsed response.
Jesus regularly asked questions. In Luke 10:26-28, Jesus responded to the lawyer’s question with a question. By doing so, He allowed the lawyer to evaluate his own thoughts and learn from the experience.
Thought-provoking questions encourage us to think about our thinking.
In this fast-paced world in which we live, we regularly find ourselves texting, tweeting and posting statements rather than sitting across from loved ones and friends to have a meaningful conversation. As convenient as digital communication is, it actually fosters surface relationships and eats away at the personal ones we’ve enjoyed for many years.
In the world of smart-phones, iPads, and computers, we are encouraged to keep it short, which ultimately leads to less meaningful questions and unemotional responses. The objective of a text or tweet is to get the point across, in a few words as possible. As convenient as it is (and I have to admit, I wouldn’t want to live without it) digital communication is mostly void of the relational qualities a personal conversation can provide.
Are you ready to create space and time for meaningful conversations?
Will you purposely ask more questions and listen more attentively to future conversations?
What thought-provoking, heartfelt questions will you plan to ask a friend or loved one this week?