White Christmas Tree

Audio / Produced by The High Calling


Madeline wanted something unusual. The four-year-old repeatedly asked for "a white Christmas tree." She’d say: why QUIZ-mee twee. "Maybe next Christmas," her parents said, "they’d see about a white Christmas tree."

For months, Madeline persisted. She wanted a why QUIZ-mee twee. And one day she dragged her dad to the pantry and pointed . . . to a Rice Krispie treat!

Ah, the good ol’ communication breakdown! The speaker believes she’s perfectly clear—but she’s fixated on her wants. The listener hears something else entirely.

This is Howard Butt, Jr., of Laity Lodge. Don’t assume you’re understood. We all must consider not just what we are saying, but what our listeners may be hearing . . . in the high calling of our daily work.