The wisdom of listening first

Something to laugh about but also a teachable moment.

This video reminded me of a lesson we had during our cross-cultural training prior to going to our mission field. Often we see a problem and try to fix it. Our natural tendency is to share our advice first without learning the context of our counterpart or even our own.

The issue of race has been a highlight in our current events, but that’s only one side of the coin. Race/racism is the obvious, visible aspect being protested throughout the country. The other side of the coin has do with learning the specific cultural context of each group: #blacklivesmatter, #alllivesmatter, right, left, etc. Learning about the cultural context of others takes diligence and humility. Effective cross-cultural communication requires asking good questions and listening first. It takes effort. It takes practice. And these actions will take us out of our comfort zone.

Proverbs 18:13 If one gives an answer before he hears, it is his folly and shame.

I encourage you to read all of Proverbs 18. I think it is very appropriate for our times. It won’t take you more than 4 minutes. 😁


Kyu and Anna Kim are missionaries based in Medellin, Colombia. Their ministry passion is to walk along with the Colombian church as they develop the growth and expansion of Gospel centered communities.

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