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tommyboltHere's another message on the importance of listening, from a little different perspective:

Tommy Bolt, winner of the 1958 US Open, tells the story of an incident he had during one of his golf tournaments. Bolt arrived at the golf course for the tournament and was approached by a youngster, “Mr. Bolt, do you need a caddy, sir?” Bolt went to the caddy master and asked about the youngster. The man said, “He’s a real good caddy, knows the course, the greens, and the rules of the game. But he talks a lot.”

So Bolt went back to the youngster and said, “You can caddy for me on one condition: Don’t say a word.” The young man accepted and carried Bolt's bag. The first three rounds went well, and Bolt was in contention in the fourth round, when an errant tee shot landed in the rough. The ball was sitting down in a bad patch of turf, with a difficult shot to the green which was well guarded by water on the right.

Bolt asked his caddy, “You think a five iron will do the trick?” The kid shook his head no, but never said a word.

“What, you want me to hit a six iron?” Again, the kid shook his head no, but did not speak. Bolt grabbed a six iron and lashed the ball out of the rough and landed on the green, rolling to within three feet of the hole.

As they walked to the green, Bolt said, “Aren’t you going to say something now, after seeing a shot like that?” His caddy then replied, “Mr. Bolt, that wasn’t your ball.”

Many of us go through life like that. We don't want to hear what anyone else has to say. In fact, we don't even want to hear what God has to say. And when we become intent on doing things our way without listening to the voices of wisdom around us, we are headed for disaster.

Solomon advised us to, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths." (Proverbs 3:5-6)

He also encouraged us to: "Incline your ear and hear the words of the wise, and apply your heart to my knowledge; For it is a pleasant thing if you keep them within you." (Proverbs 22:17-18)

If you're inclined to tell others, "I don't want to hear anything that you have to say", you may want to reconsider. The time may come when you wish you had listened.

Alan Smith