Give the Gift of Your Attention
“Do not be interested only in your own life, but be interested in the lives of others” (Philippians 2:4 NCV).
When you walk into a meeting, how many people are sitting there looking at their phone and texting? Our heads seem to be always down, engrossed in a video or game, and our earbuds keep us from hearing the people near us. It’s so easy to sit in a restaurant with friends yet be more concerned about our “friends” on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram.
We live in a world where our tools and technology have left us perpetually distracted, and we no longer pay attention to the people around us.
If you want happier relationships, you need to learn the lost art of paying attention.
The Bible says in Philippians 2:4, “Do not be interested only in your own life, but be interested in the lives of others” (NCV).
This doesn’t come naturally, does it? Based on my nature, I may not care what you’re interested in. Based on my nature, I may want the attention on me, not you.
But the greatest gift you can give somebody is your attention because your attention is your time and your time is your life. You’re never going to get it back, and that’s why it is so precious when you give it.
This is a simple but powerful tool in growing strong relationships. Are you interested in what your kids are interested in? Do you listen to what your spouse has to say? Do you give your coworkers your attention when they speak to you? Do you notice your neighbors as you walk by their home in the morning?
Learning the lost art of paying attention is an act of love. It will transform your relationships and help you live a happy life.
Talk It Over
How can social media keep you from developing relationships with the people you live and work with?
What are some ways you can turn your attention to the people around you today?
How do you show others that you are truly paying attention to what they are saying or doing?
This devotional © 2019 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.