(Pro 4:1 KJV) Hear, ye children, the instruction of a father, and attend to know understanding.
It is very important that we embrace what it means to “hear” (8085). The definition given in Brown-Driver-Briggs is “to hear, to listen, to obey”. It is that last part that we like to ignore. My wife is concerned about my hearing. Putting aside her tendency to not finish sentences and change subjects with no warning, the question is often asked, “Didn’t you hear me say...?” Since I confess I was able to hear other things that she said it comes down to not paying attention.
I won’t go into all the reasons why I might not have been paying attention to my wife. You will have your own. There are times when it is perfectly appropriate to drift in our attention. I think of churches I have visited and after a few minutes of the sermon I begin to realize there is nothing there. I think of people who don’t know what they are talking about trying to tell me how to do something. I need to make sure it doesn’t happen when God or His written word are trying to talk to me.
So? I find it helps me to do an attitude check. I kick myself in the morning before I start to read Proverbs. I remind myself I am supposed to be paying attention, not just going through a habit. Sometimes it helps but it never helps if I don’t to it.