It can be so frustrating to try to find a solution to a tough problem with no results. You may even want to give up and quit but I want to encourage you-don’t quit! Now that you have done all you know to do, if you are one with faith, get ready to experience the supernatural move of God in the situation in which seemed so hard to breakthrough. I can say that with surety because it has happened for me time and again. Sometimes we need to get out of the way in order to truly experience breakthrough. Problem solving can be frustrating when we have all the distractions, troubles, and aggravations that add to the issue. I believe something about problems has the capacity to awaken our courage and creativity if our perspective can remain positive. When we solve problems we see progress and when we see progress we are our happiest. As we courageously solve the aspects of the problems we face without shrinking we naturally increase our capacity to receive breakthrough after breakthrough. Breakthrough begins to take place because our paradigm is shifting and our perspective is changing so we so we see internal growth which is a catalyst for external movement. These breakthroughs can be mental, physical, financial or in any area of your life. As I’ve matured I have learned that even if an answer doesn’t come in the form I imagined but it solves the problem I can still have peace.
As we take responsibility to move forward we are actually working with God to move obstacles out of the way so he can move for us and do what only He can do. “Awake! Rise and shine (Isaiah 60)”, the bible admonishes God’s people to wake up to their salvation because if they have light they can become light. Sometimes we can fall asleep to our own light or maybe we were never awakened to our light(our ability). I know I’ve had times in my life when I’ve been on auto-pilot and solving problems was the last thing on my mind I was sleep-walking through life, sleeping on God’s power and invitation to receive his grace and blessings for a specific problem. Good thing God never leaves us in the condition he finds us in and allows situations to help us wake up to our light and faith. With that being said, when problems present themselves I encourage you to do everything you can to solve it, you cannot conquer what you refuse to confront. When we confront issues even if we do not have a complete solution we can take pride in the fact that we are acting in courage and it is then that different solutions will be unveiled to us.
Whenever I have a tough problem now, my first response is usually, “God, please help me!” It wasn’t always this way though when I was younger I was fearful and didn’t have a lot of problem solving skill I would just let the problem remain and get bigger and bigger until it had a snowball effect on my life and it got so big it was entirely out of control. My problem solving skills got much better over time as I gained courage and learned from my mistakes. I realized there was no problem that God wasn’t willing to help me solve and as long as I was willing to do the work to research and gain knowledge in a specific area I could see solutions.
Courage is a big part of solving our problems, if we can get out of fear we can face the issue head on and brain storm keys which give us our power back to move forward. When we have a sense of power (instead of fear) we are more apt to try and solve our problems. If we feel powerful instead of pitiful we will begin to seek knowledge and understanding and take action. Power is a mindset envisioning a positive outcome, being convinced of God’s word concerning you coupled with understanding that you are a masterpiece. The first key to solving problems is becoming conscious that you have a problem and acknowledging your thinking may be the
underlying issue. Secondly acknowledging that your problem is solvable. After this it takes nerve to move into brainstorming the problem and mining it out further so you can unravel the problem for accuracy and your peace of mind. Do what you can with what you have and when you know better do better.
Sometimes even after we have enlisted help, gained knowledge, and applied that knowledge, the problem refuses to move. A good question to ask yourself at this point is, “What is God trying to teach me or what action does he really want me to take?” We learn best not in our comfort zones but in our times of conflict. Life has a way of putting a demand on the greatness we carry since we are not always aware of it and it’s in these times of indifference we can truly discern who we are and what we’re made of as difficulties emerge. This is a good time to reflect, fast and pray and by faith praise God in advance for the answer-this way the focus is off you and the problem and on the ultimate Problem-Solver!
How can we know God will help us? Psalm 46 teaches us that “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” Also in Proverbs 3, it promises that when we acknowledge God and stop leaning on our own understanding, he will make straight our paths. To me this means God has designed a solution that is befitting for us, a design for us that will be straight, right, pleasant, good and prosperous. When we acknowledge God we look outside of our knowledge and received God’s mind on
the matter. My problem with problems, the way they make me feel and that sometimes is powerless and hopeless. In my experience it is not until you are so tired of being tired that you divorce the way problem makes you feel and marry the truth which is faith trumps feelings and that you are capable and courageous enough to win the battle. Tough problems can be opportunities to change us on the inside while we are waiting for a change on the outside.
As we change from the inside out, our problem that seemed the size of a mountain may now seem smaller. Why? We have intentionally enlisted God’s help by faith, when we do this it enlarges our view of God and decreases the size of our problems. When we ask for God’s help we gain his power. We begin to see Him as our God, our fortress, our refuge, the rock on which we stand so come what may our spirit man is empowered and we know that because we love God and we are called according to His purpose all things will work together for our good. Think of it like this-problems are parts of our lives as whole, these individual parts are both an extensive and intensive force that work together for our inherit good as believer’s and this good originates from God and is empowered by Him in our lives through faith. Good is what we get when we change our perspective from victim to victor.
You will either see the problem and take courage to solve it or take flight usually in fear (due to feeling paralyzed by the nature or size of the issue) opting to hide until you decide to face it or expect it to go away on its own. When I have stepped away in fear, it is not until I enlist the help of God through faith that I can face the ensuing battle and win! So what does problem solving by faith look like?
Understanding that God has given every man/woman a measure of faith, so use it! God wants you to enlist His help by gaining knowledge of His word, aligning your belief systems and your speech with His word. Now faith is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed) of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see and the conviction of their reality (faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses)-(Hebrews 11).
Understanding that facing the problem is the first step i.e., making the call, acknowledging the issue (even if you do not have a concrete solution) being open to conversation and removing your defense mechanisms.
Being open to a new and improved train of thought about the matter because the same paradigm that you got you into the mess will not get you out, you will need a renewed way of thinking.
You need to know who you are in God so that you are not defeated because you are suffering from a spiritual identity crisis-Accept that you are God’s child, his masterpiece and that he has placed a distinction on you which means he wants to help you.
Be open to new solutions and carry them out.
Be empowered! “Go in this might of yours”-meaning believe in your ability (light) to confront and conquer the issue no matter how long it takes. Stay strong in your faith by keeping the end result in mind.
Realize that asking God once, twice or even three times if he is really with you is okay- I personally believe it is an act of faith that says, “I cannot do this without you nor do I want to!”
Recognize who can help and who cannot on the matter-your circle of advisors may need to decrease to see results.
Do what you can and trust that God will move the unmovable by faith. Psalm 37 says, "Commit your way to the Lord, trust in Him and He will act."
Close the door to things that just don’t work. Get rid of any habits that may cause the same problem to re-present all over again by making good decisions.
Once upon a time, I moved into what I believed was going to be a great place for myself and my girls, a sizeable daylight space. I was moving from a different state so every move was greatly scrutinized on paper credit checks, background checks and applications where I was concerned. The only thing is you cannot scrutinize personality or character over the internet or the phone and this became a problem in my new dream apartment. Everything went well at first but as time passed I noticed missed payments to utilities, stories that didn’t line up and all out lies. I thought Dear God, how am I going to get out of this? If it wasn’t one thing it was another, the water bill wasn’t paid so we were without water, the heating system broke, clothes were left in the shared laundry space, and my lifestyle and my children’s lifestyle were being monitored. My family was in no way perfect, I had to remind my kids to turn out the lights, be mindful of noise levels and respect curfew. Living in a shared space can be good if you have boundaries, respect, honesty, clear expectations and doors that close all the way! I began to get so frustrated and I felt like I was constantly being lied to about everything-it was clearly time to go.
My problem: I’d planned stay for at least two years to rebuild after divorce and I especially needed to pay some bills off to remove them from my credit report. How would I be able to move into a traditional apartment with my credit issues? I didn’t know where start and I was afraid because I didn’t have all the funds saved to move, I was afraid of being denied, I was afraid that my family would endure more shock we couldn’t handle and it would tear us apart. I could cower in fear or take a position of faith, I decided to take a place of faith and believe God would bring honey from the rock. Meaning as I broke agreement with fear God would in some way he would bring sweetness out of a hard situation. Long story short, I was honest about my credit issues and by faith, I began to look for somewhere new to live without considering my limitations. I did everything I knew to do practically but I also knew I needed help from God-spiritually, practically and emotionally, I needed God’s strength.
I got together with a friend in the faith and we began to look at several small houses. I had faith for a small apartment but a house not so much I didn’t think I was ready for that. My friend in the faith kept asking me what I wanted and my train of thought was, “I’ll take what I can get!” The lesson was- I was thinking on my level and not God’s. God was stretching my faith and annihilating my fear by asking me to be specific about what I wanted and needed. Faith creates a space for God to move miraculously. We got to the last house and I was beyond grateful for my friend in the faith, she was an extension of God’s strength to me in those moments. I looked around the house and I knew it was the one, so we prayed and believed God for the place. I did the footwork required and believed God every step of the way. A financial road block presented itself and I had no clue what I was going to do. It was a very distressing time and I realized that even when you are in faith you still feel what you are going through but that doesn’t stop God from moving. I was really distraught; I started looking for different solutions to no avail.
I finally just stopped and took a call from my friend in the faith, we talked and she encouraged me. I pulled over, and began to pray and weep, “I said to God, only you can do this, I believe.” In the same day a suddenly took place-I got the money I needed to move, I dropped it off at the realtor’s office and they agreed to overlook the credit issues and I was give the keys to move in my new place; I was encouraged, relieved, happy and in awe of God’s ability to help me through a tough and a tight time. I was later in awe as I walked through my house, that I rented in my name and I didn’t have to be quiet, I didn’t have to share space, my kids had their own rooms and I was in a cul-de-sac in which I specifically requested from God(smiles).
As I cleared out the old place and began to move into the new place my church family showed up to help I was so taken back by the encouragement, my faith in God was strengthened and my faith in God’s people was being restored. It was an amazing victory by the hand of the Lord and the story continues because I believe God to own the place of refuge that He provided for us by standing firmly in faith on God’s Word to own land. I’ve also started to take the practical steps to put myself in the best place to buy. Listen; because I have history with God that proves his willingness to help me solve problems and His willingness to act I am more than persuaded I will soon own my own home! God has that same willingness to help you and to act on your behalf! Homeownership is not just a solution to a problem for me it is appropriating a generational blessing and building a legacy of faith and wealth for those that come behind me. God's word declares, "I will plant them in their land and no longer shall they be pulled up from the land I have given them (Amos 9) through this faith stance I believe God to break the back of homelessness and establish my family line. Its hard to rebuild after divorce but with the help of God's Word we can superimpose every difficulty and see a new destiny for our lives. What promises are you standing on to see change? What are you envisioning? What legacy will you build? Well, you could say for my life and yours- problems can be tough but they are also opportunities to be courageous and creative to open the way for solutions that don’t only bless us personally but those around us as well with abundant life. What problem are you believing God to help you solve? I'd love to hear about it!