We tend to think insightful people have all the answers. They have the “tweet-able” quotes, the sticky one-liners, and penetrating analysis. But the more conversations I have, the more people I talk to, there is one interesting attribute characteristic of the most insightful people I’ve known: they ask questions.
The best thinkers among us like to walk around a topic and look at it from all angles. They ask questions no one else is asking. They ask new questions and old questions in new ways. They avoid the pitfall of making uncorroborated assumptions. They don’t make the mistake of believing they know everything there is to know about a topic or circumstance.
As a brief aside, I’m becoming increasingly convinced that an inability to ask questions or enough questions is a character flaw. When someone is prone to making exponentially more statements than they ask questions, the engine of hubris is likely driving that. For what it’s worth, Jesus asked 307 questions in the gospels. He was asked just 183. He asked more questions than were asked of him. And he was the most insightful human being ever to live. Interesting.
You don’t have to make statements in order to give understanding to dull minds. You can encourage a listless soul or soften a hardened heart through questions. Questions build a platform for the work of God in someone’s life. So don’t stress about making the right statement. Work to ask more questions.