That first Saturday night train took about ten years off my life. I came up out of a deep sleep when the horn sounded. We had only been in the house two days and in the fog of sleep, I did not know where I was or what was happening. Then I heard that train getting closer and closer, louder and louder. I realized what it was then, but my perspective was so out of whack that it sounded like the train was headed straight for the middle of the house. I sat straight up, frozen in terror until it had passed.
Within two weeks I was sleeping through the din. Not even the sudden wail of the horn woke me. During the day it took the tug of a little hand on my shirttail for me to hear the train coming so we could go out and wave. Your mind tunes out what it doesn’t want to hear, and does a grand job of it.
How many times do we tune out people? When we learn another’s pet peeves, the things he goes on about at the least provocation, we no longer listen. If we have the misfortune to deal with someone who nags, we tune that out. Maybe we should learn the lesson to choose our battles. If we want what we say to matter to people, don’t go on and on about the trivial or they will have tuned us out long ago and never hear the things they really need to hear. Parents need to learn that.
Then there is the matter of tuning out God. Oh, we all want to hear how Jesus loved the sinners, but let’s not hear His command to, “Go thy way and sin no more.” Let’s remind ourselves that the apostle Paul was not above preaching to some of the vilest sinners in the known world, fornicators, idolaters, adulterers, effeminate, abusers of themselves with men, thieves, covetous, drunkards, revilers, extortioners. But let’s ignore the fact that he says they changed: such were some of you; let’s ignore the fact that he said that in their prior state they were unrighteous and could not inherit the kingdom of God, 1 Cor 6:9-11. That’s just one of the many things people don’t hear.
Today, maybe we should ask ourselves what it is we don’t want to hear. I imagine that it is the very thing we need to hear the most.
Why do you not understand my speech? Because you cannot hear my word. He that is of God hears the words of God: for this cause you hear not, because you are not of God, John 8:43,47.