Finding The Solution for Pressings Problems and Difficulties

Finding a Solution

We all face problems: some small, others large, a few impossible! How and where do we find a tangible solution to the towering difficulties we face? Finding resolution when the problems are enormous is what I want to look at today.

I often feel “recharged” in the prospect of finding a solution. If the problem is daunting, there may be a hesitation in my step, but generally I’ll roll up my sleeves and dig in with an attitude of “I will eat this elephant one mouthful at a time!”

When the problem appears overwhelming and insurmountable, I respond quite differently! As a matter of fact, my reaction is much like that of the early apostles.

Mountainous Problems

The Problem

The apostles had just returned from a successful but tiring ministry trip. Jesus saw their exhaustion and knew they needed rest!

When the apostles returned,
they reported to Jesus what they had done.
Then he took them with him
and they withdrew by themselves
to a town called Bethsaida,”
Luke 9:10

Why do problems erupt when we are tired and unprepared? Fatigue seems to complicate situations.

“but the crowds learned about it and followed him.”
Luke 9:11

The presence of a needy crowd escalated the problem even more. Interruptions never disturbed Jesus, however. His compassion was bigger than any crowd! When there was a need, convenient or not, Jesus made Himself available!

Jesus always had overflowing compassion!

“He welcomed them and spoke to them
about the kingdom of God,
and healed those who needed healing.”
Luke 9:11

But…

Dusk was approaching! In this remote place food was inaccessible. Jesus had healed their bodies and fed them spiritually. Now He asks the disciples for their cooperation.

“Jesus…said to Philip,
‘Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?’ ”
John 6:5

Solution #1

“Buy bread? Out here?” I can almost hear Philip’s shocked response.

All four gospels record the details of this day,  confirming a crowd of 5,000 men. The number of women would have been similar, with probably even more children. Conservative estimates would tally the crowd at around 15,000.

Have you ever had the doorbell ring fifteen minutes before mealtime, “Just dropping in for a quick visit!” Every woman knows the panic of that moment. To the fridge and pantry she scurries evaluating the potential for a quick meal.

The magnitude of this problem, however, was much larger! It would be more like opening your door to a thousand starving, weary people.

Solution 1: Send them away!

 

I love the apostle’s solution:

Send the crowd away
so they can go to the surrounding villages and countryside
and find food and lodging..”
Luke 9:12

“Jesus, take the problem away!”

“It’s not my problem! Let them find a solution!”

“Send them away!”

Yep! I’ve said all that and more in flare prayer fashion to lesser emergencies! “Please Lord, make the problem go away!”

Solution #2

Jesus didn’t buy into their reasoning:

You give them something to eat.”
Mark 6:37

The ex-fishermen looked desperately for a lake and boat, while the  former tax collector checked his empty pockets. Even Dr. Luke was at a loss for a reasonable solution.

“That would take more than half a year’s wages!
Are we to go and spend that much on bread
and give it to them to eat?”
Mark 6:37

Solution 2: Send me away!

The apostles second option was “Send us away!”

“If you aren’t going to take the problem from us, then at least take us from the problem!”

I can laugh a little because right now it isn’t me! But I certainly can relate!

How many times have I tried to wiggle out of a problem God has prepared just for me? The answer, of course, is frequently! I want a way of escape instead of learning more of Him.

I have a name for these times, the pits! It is in the pit, however, where God develops my character and fashions me just a little more like Himself. If I wrangle my way out, there will be another pit coming my way soon. God loves me too much not to invest in my development.

Jesus didn’t allow the Apostles to settle for option #2!

The Question

How many loves do you have? he asked,
Go and see.’ ”
Mark 6:38

Jesus confronts their insufficiency. “What do you have? Go and see! Take a good look!”

The Apostles confess their lack,

“…five small barley loaves and two small fish,
but how far will they go among so many?”
John 6:9

Small feet! Big steps!

How unprepared I feel in many situations! My little seems woefully inadequate, while the demands loom large. The longer I stare at the problem, the more insufficient my abilities and resources appear.

No training for this!
Too old to start now!
Skills are lacking!
Thoughts of inadequacy dominate!

The Solution

In front of the Apostles stood The Solution to every and all need. His Name is Jesus! He took the little they had broke it, blessed it and multiplied it. Be prepared! Breaking always comes before blessing. But only in the breaking can multiplying occur.

[bctt tweet=”Be prepared! Breaking comes before blessing!” username=”MAWardAuthor”]

The disciples received their meager gift back to give it away. The little they had proved to be more than enough in the hands of the Master.

“They all ate and were satisfied,
and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls
of broken pieces that were left over.”
Luke 9:17

When God refuses to remove problems from us or us from our problems, there is always a reason. If only we will allow Him to truly take our little, He will bless it. It may need to be broken, but the result will be worth it.

Hindsight will prove Him faithful! Right now, we exercise our faith! With Christ in the equation the solutions will continue to surprise and amaze us, while teaching and changing us.

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Good reads:

Lovelessness! Choosing to Love More!

What To Do When The Answer is “No”

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Jesus Christ The Sure Foundation – Building to Last

Jesus Christ the firm Foundation

The most important part of any building, ministry or individual is its foundation. Though unseen, a foundation is powerful and strategic. In a structure of any kind, if something is off-base or askew there is a problem in the foundation.

Foundations are critical! They are unseen, yet their impact is clearly visible. Where is your foundation? Is it level? Secure?

The Word of God

Since earliest times, the foundation of faith is the writing of Moses: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy.

“The first five books of the Bible (both Hebrew and Christian) are foundational to all of Scripture…taken by the Jews to constitute a unity known to them as the Torah or Law. To the Jews, the word Torah…means not only the “law” but also “teaching” or “instruction” which more completely characterizes God’s communication to the Israelites through Moses.”

These writing were not just read or studied, they were memorized and absorbed. Why? Here that we learn the character and the ways of God.

“He (God)revealed his character (ways) to Moses
and his deeds to the people of Israel.”
Psalm 103:7

It is in these books that we come to “hear” the heart of God and know how He speaks.

God Still Speaks

“For God does speak
now one way, now another…
In a dream,
in a vision…”

Job 32: 14

Dreams and Visions

When we have the foundation of God’s word, we are able to discern what we hear. Everything God speaks will be laid upon the foundation of scripture. It will align to His character perfectly.

Elihu says the reasons may vary, but God speaks “in their ears.”

God originally spoke to Samuel in an audible voice.

“The LORD came and stood there,
calling as at the other times,
‘Samuel! Samuel!’ ”
I Samuel 3:10

But more often, God “revealed himself to Samuel through his word.” (vs 21)

Jesus the Foundation

“For no man can lay a foundation
other than the one which is laid,
which is Jesus Christ.”
1 Corinthians 3:11

“Therefore thus says the LORD God,
‘Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a tested stone,
A costly cornerstone for the foundation, firmly placed.
He who believes in it will not be disturbed.”
Isaiah 28:16

The Word

Jesus is the Foundation Who has always been!

“In the beginning was the Word,
and the Word was with God,
and the Word was God.”
John 1:1

To know the Word is to know Christ. Those who believe in Him “will not be disturbed.” The Amplified version says, “he who believes (trusts in, relies on, and adheres to that Stone) will not be ashamed or give or hasten away [in sudden panic].”

Faith in Christ is a Foundation so secure circumstance cannot shake those whose lives are built upon that Stone!

Apostles and Prophets

“So now you Gentiles are no longer strangers and foreigners.
You are citizens along with all of God’s holy people.
You are members of God’s family.
Together, we are his house,
built on the foundation of the apostles and the prophets.
And the cornerstone is Christ Jesus himself.”
Ephesians 2: 19-20

Build Together

If there would be a ranking of apostles and prophets, it would be:

  • Jesus the Chief Apostle (Hebrews 3:1) and Prophet (Luke 13:33)
  • Apostles and prophets of the bible who were given an anointing grace to write scripture
  • all other apostles and prophets

The purpose of apostles and prophets is to build and strengthen the church of Christ.

“But the one who prophesies speaks to people
for their strengthening,
encouraging and comfort.”
I Corinthians 14:3

Their work is to build upon the Foundation of The Word, Jesus Himself.

Today

To daily come to God with open bible asking Him to speak and reveal His character is a healthy practise for every believer. He still speaks; He is just waiting for us to listen.

In the margins of my bible are verses that seemed to speak directly to me or some circumstance I was facing. I pencilled in the date and a two-word reference to what was happening. Then when I read these verses, I can whisper a prayer of thanksgiving about how God has already responded.

Building on the Foundation

On my wall are key verses – verses that bring strength, encouragement, comfort, direction, or even correction. I also have written out prophetic prayers others have prayed over me. Here too, I have been able to add dates and specifics about how God has and is responding through these verses and prayers of others on my behalf.

This is one practical example of being sure the Foundation is secure. I am continuing to build on the Foundation, Jesus Christ.

The Foundation that Lasts

Lord, help me be more intentional
in building my life
upon You, the Chief Cornerstone,
my Firm Foundation,
the unfaltering Word of God.
Here I choose to stay –
secure.

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