Ran into a pretty good thought from blogger Seth Godin. Made me stop and ask myself, “Who has my ear?” Often times it is our critics who get our ears right? If I preach a sermon and 20 people tell me how much God used that message in their life — but 2 people tell me that it was a mediocre sermon — who gets my ear. Now granted if one of those two critics is my wife — who happens to be my greatest encourager — I better listen. But the point is we tend to focus on the critics. Doesn’t it seem like it takes about 10 encouraging comments to balance out 1 negative comment?
Here is where Seth Godin’s insight comes in. Don’t listen to your critics, he writes, but pay the same level of attention to your fans. Don’t listen to your fans anymore than you listen to your critics. Critics will never be happy, but fans won’t motivate you to grow.
So who should have our ears? Godin tells us to listen to the sneezers. To be honest, I’m not sure why he picked that name…but the sneezers are the people who will tell others about you — he’s coming from a marketing perspective. Listen to the sneezers. Make the sneezers happy and your business will grow.
Here is how I would apply it to the church. Listen to the people who are a part of the team. Listen to the people who own the vision. Don’t listen to the customers. Don’t listen to the critics. Don’t listen to the fans. Listen to your teammates. Give your ear to the “whenever, whatever” people — the “whenever you need me and whatever it takes” people. One of the reason I love being a part of the Calvary team is because there are so many “whenever, whatever” people.
Thank you, you have my ear.