I took my father for a hearing test last week. He needed an upgrade to his hearing aids. I think we often forget the value of actually hearing everything that is said and every sound that is made. If you let your hearing go without aids for too long, your brain loses the ability to help you recognize and hear correct sounds. Once this is lost, it is never regained. The ability to reproduce certain sounds goes also.
As I was waiting for my father’s test to be administered I
noticed a quote framed on the wall:
“When you lose your vision, you lose contact with things. When you lose your hearing, you lose contact with people.” – Helen Keller
I began to think about vision meaning to move forward together focused on specific goals set along the way in our congregations. I thought about hearing as what we do when we provide opportunities in small groups to listen to one another at least once a week with an invitation to practice faith talk in the home during the rest of the week. This quote in the context and setting of the church is reason for concern from my perspective. If we set no vision at all or lose sight of our goals, we run the risk of losing contact with the most important thing in our lives: God.
We can have many opportunities in large group and small group settings where we listen to the Word and talk with one another. How often do we emphasize the importance of really hearing what is read or said? If we lose our sense of hearing, we lose the ability to build relationships and strengthen the Body.
When we look around us at the shrinking numbers of people attending worship in mainline denominations, could it be a sign we are losing our vision and worst of all our hearing?
It’s food for thought!