I’ve heard a few (maybe more) speakers in my day. Most of their talks, I’ve heard before, just packaged differently. Whether it’s about parenting, the Bible, youth ministry, church culture, financial issues, etc., most of it is stuff I already know. They are great reminders, but it’s nothing new. Maybe a different spin. Maybe a different angle that sheds a different insight.

Yet many of us flock to these “outsiders”, these “experts” who we go to hear. We’ve probably heard the same content from our parents, our spouses, our kids, our friends, our colleagues. It may even be the exact same words, but it seems when it comes from an outsider, an “expert”, all of a sudden that knowledge is gold. I’ve been on both sides, as the participant and the “ouside expert”. Grant it, sometimes the outsider gives the audience the shake-up needed for the content to be absorbed. But I wonder, if we actually listened and paid attention to our own circle of family and friends, who could already know the same stuff, we could be tapping into a wealth of knowledge, usually FOR FREE!

I realize there’s a number of variables that factor into this behaviour.  But sometimes, maybe we need to put aside our own emotional baggage and be willing to listen for our own sake of learning and understanding.

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