Newt Gingrich Devotional: An embarrassing confession

Editor’s Note: Newt Gingrich is our guest devotional writer.

Focal Passage: James 1:19— “Let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak…”

Earlier today I had the following conversation with a member of my “dream team,” Chuck Norris, the actor and karate expert. In a spirit of confession I want to share it with you. I must admit, I’m very ashamed of the way I handled this.

Newt Gingrich DevotionalNewt: Chuck, I’ve called you here because of your longtime loyalty to conservative causes, because you still possess a waning celebrity and most importantly, because of your potent martial arts skills.

Chuck: Yes, sensei.

Newt: As you know, we have been surrounded by liberals and even some conservative friends who seek to harm our cause, to thwart our efforts to inject big ideas into the political arena.

Chuck: Yes, sensei.

Newt: They can question my conservative credentials all day long, but they can never question my determination to win at all costs. Do you understand?

Chuck: Yes, sensei.

Newt: I’m a winner, Chuck. You’re on a winning team. Not a second-best kind of team. And that’s why I have an assignment for you.

Chuck: Yes, sensei.

Chuck NorrisNewt: I want you to seek out all my enemies– both personal and political, foreign and domestic–and destroy them, no matter what it takes. Of course,  I cannot personally order you to break laws, or use threats, violence and even bloodshed to accomplish your task. You will have to decide those particular  methods by reaching deep into your inner Walker Texas Ranger, or better yet go back to some of the fancy moves you used against Bruce Lee in Way of the Dragon.

Chuck: Yes, sensei.

Newt: I CAN tell you, though, that I have removed the photos and plaques from my office wall, and I have prepared a place to display each of their scalps. Do you get my meaning, Chuck?

Chuck: Yes, sensei.

Newt: Fly then, little bird. I will see you again in the halls of victory and triumph.

Chuck: Yes, sensei.

As I reviewed this conversation, one thing jumped out — I’m a terrible listener! Did you notice it was mostly just me babbling on? That was a monologue, not a dialogue.  I opened up no space for Chuck to give his point of view, or discuss what might be on his mind. This is something my second wife was always harping on me about, and I guess I just never learned. But now I vow to nurture a listening ear,  allow for collaborative problem-solving and put this in my leadership-skills quiver.

Spiritual bottom line: We know that Jesus is always a good listener. He’s attentive to our every need. Lord, make us all good listeners today. Amen.

About Skippy R

Skippy R is retired after toiling as a scribe for a large denominational newspaper in Texas for about 40 years. He's written for The Wittenburg Door and Beliefnet. He lives in Dallas with his wife, Mrs. Skippy, and leads a Bible study in his home. Mostly spends time running after his grandkids. He is -- what are they calling it now? -- a Jesus follower.
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