Is Anybody Listening?

many talk but few listen

When a Nation Doesn’t Listen

Posted on | July 18, 2013 | No Comments

Can a nation stop listening – or refuse to listen?

A few weeks ago Britain was marking the passing of former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. In a BBC radio programme commentators were reviewing how she had dealt with the trade unions that had assumed so much power and control under Harold Wilson’s Labour Government.

During the discussion a single phrase caught my attention: “The country was not listening.” It was used in reference to the 1936 Jarrow March organised by the people of Jarrow, near Newcastle, in protest at massive unemployment in the shipyards of the northeast. 207 people marched peacefully to London – a distance of nearly 300 miles – to present a petition to the British government, led by Stanley Baldwin. But nobody took much notice… The government paid them off with a return train ticket so that they could go home. But nothing happened. Disheartening, to say the least…

There are times when people block their ears. They don’t want to hear when others are complaining (you have your troubles, I have mine) or when the news is too uncomfortable to their ears – a warning perhaps.

It has happened many times in the past.

More disturbing is when the real facts are not being truly presented or heard. Government propaganda can distort the facts. Journalists can hype some aspects of a story so that the most critical things are overlooked. This results in people no longer listening because they don’t know who to trust. Or they have made up their own minds already.

Sometimes God speaks as he did to people back in history – the Israelites in particular. They didn’t listen, and I am fearful lest we do the same. The results could be catastrophic.

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