Give the Gift of Your Attention
By Rick Warren
“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 phones, texting or scrolling social media? 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.
You may be hanging out with two friends, but you’re more focused on tweeting to 100! Then you’re worried about how many people are retweeting it or liking your post. It’s all about you instead of the people God has placed right in front of you.
We live in a world where our tools and technology have left us perpetually distracted and trained us to no longer pay attention to the people in our lives.
If you want to have happier relationships, you need to learn the lost art of paying attention.
This doesn’t come naturally, does it? Based on your nature, you may not care what someone else is interested in. Based on your nature, you usually want the attention on yourself, not the other person.
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 your time 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 partner 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.
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This devotional © 2018 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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