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--Just Give'm the Solution: Jesus!
--By Maria       Maria #162 DO 2788 9/91

       1. When you're out witnessing, instead of getting so wrapped up in every little personal problem that you may encounter, why not just keep it simple? Instead of trying to give them some big complicated answer or long list of Scriptures to counter or resolve each of the individual personal problems that the person you're witnessing to brings up, I want to suggest that we go with a more general approach: "OK, this is your problem?--Jesus has the answer for it, & here's His answer. His Word says, `If you'll cast all your care upon Him, He'll care for you!'"--1Pet.5:7.
       2. We can simply tell people, "If you'll just put your life in His hands, then He'll take care of & help you to deal with any problem that you have!--He can help you through it & make it easier for you & be the kind of support & comfort & friend that you need." When you take that kind of a more general approach, you don't have to get so into trying to counsel people on each of their individual problems; what to do, for example, if someone says they have an alcoholic mother & they don't want to bring their friends home, or maybe they say their father beats them.
       3. Instead of trying to give them all kinds of specific counsel, it would be better to start out more generally, with showing them that Jesus is the One Who can give them the solutions to their problems, & that if they'll just give their life to Him, He'll take care of them. After they've received the Lord would be the time to go into things in a little more detail, with more specific verses, if you feel so led. But I don't believe that any of us need to think that personal witnessing has to be a big drawn-out & complicated counselling session that requires a very wise & experienced counsellor with a vast knowledge of the Word. Just try John 3:16!
       4. That's what scared me when I was a System Christian! I thought, "I'd better wait & first learn how to really counsel people about all these different potential problems that might come up before I attempt to witness to them." But no matter how difficult their problem is, you can just tell them, "I may not know the specific answer, but the Lord knows the answer, & if you just give your life to Him & look to Him for His answers, He'll work it out for you in the way that He knows is best, that will be best for you. He'll give you all the help you need."
       5. Witnessing is actually very simple. The first step is getting them to turn to the Lord & look to Him for His help. I think that's how we should approach it. I don't think we need to do like a lot of church Christians do, & study all kinds of complicated counselling questions & answers dealing with all sorts of personal problems that people may be going through. You don't have to know all of that to be an effective witness.
       6. Of course, I'm not talking about the kind of questions you should try to give them answers to, such as questions about Salvation or about the Bible etc. But difficult personal questions about their individual problems that they may have, such as questions about their marital relations, or about problems they're having with their families or relatives, or with mental problems, or with addictions or gambling or crime or sexual problems etc., these are the kind of deep personal problems that you don't have to delve into in order to witness to them & lead them to the Lord. Just tell'm Jesus can solve'm!
       7. However, if you're witnessing to somebody & they happen to ask you, "What do you think about abortion?" Or, "What do you think about homosexuality?"--That's something different from them telling you they have a big personal problem with something of this nature, & asking you what to do about it. If they're just asking you a question about what you believe or think about something, you should try to lovingly answer them from the Word.
       8. But deep questions about their personal problems are different. For example, someone may say to you, "I got pregnant & I'm not married & my mother is trying to force me to have an abortion.--What do I do?" Or, "My father beats me & I don't know who to turn to." Or, "My boyfriend just told me he has another girlfriend & I don't know how to handle it." Or, "I just found out that my father is involved in some big drug dealing activities.--Can you tell me what I should do?"--These are deep personal problems, & if you get all involved in people's personal lives & attempt to counsel them in such matters before you've even brought them to the Lord & given them the spiritual solutions that they so desperately need, you're liable to find yourself all entangled in a complicated mess!
       9. But no matter what the problem, the answer is always the same, Jesus! And after they've received the Lord & are willing to turn their lives over to Him, if they still want more specific direction in order to find God's Will in their lives, & to find out how to specifically put Jesus to work for them, then you & others can pray with them & counsel with them & share the appropriate verses from the Word with them. But unless you're in very unusual circumstances & are definitely so led of the Lord, don't attempt to delve deeply into others' personal problems on your own. These kinds of problems can be very involved & you may get yourself in a lot of trouble if you start telling people what to do without fully understanding their situation.
       10. The main thing is getting them to turn to the Lord, & you can often do that pretty quickly. You just ask them, "Oh, that's your problem?--Jesus can take care of it!--Or He can give you the solutions you need or the strength to deal with it. Just give your life to Him!" And then afterwards, if you feel the need to, you can perhaps get into some more detailed answers at greater length.

       We Need to Relate to People & Their Problems!

       11. But we don't want any of you to witness in a way that doesn't relate at all to the problems of the person you're witnessing to. For example, if somebody says, "My husband just died, & now I feel like dying too, what can I do?" or, "I just robbed a bank, what do I do now?" or, "I just got raped," you shouldn't right away rattle off, "Well, you're a sinner & you need to receive Jesus!--`All have sinned & come short of the glory of God!'" We should sympathise with them in some way, try to relate to the problem that they have first, & lead them into Salvation through that problem.
       12. Relating to someone doesn't necessarily take a lot of time. To relate to them you simply need to realise that everyone has problems for which they need help, & that whatever their problem is, Jesus can help them with it. Jesus can be the help they need. Tell'm how He solved your problems! If you understand this & can show them this, it will turn their key & help them to be much more receptive than if you're just telling them that they're a sinner who is lost without Jesus!
       13. It doesn't take hours & hours of delving into their lives & finding out all about them in order to understand them. Just put yourself in their place: The place of a person in the System with all the problems that System people have. If you know that of course they have some problems & that they need help, you should be able to make a connection with them. Tell'm how you had some of the same.

       People Who Won't Admit They Need Help!

       14. And if you run into the very occasional person who thinks that they don't have any problems, you might as well not spend very much time on them, because the Bible says that they that are whole have no need of the physician.--Or even those who think they are whole. (Mk.2:17.) The Lord also says that He fills the hungry with good things, but the rich & full, He sends empty away. (Luk.1:53.) You could just give them a tract & pray that the Lord will make them desperate enough to eventually confess their need for help & receive Him.
       15. Actually, if they're honest, there are very few people who will not admit that they have at least some problems. But because a lot of people compare themselves with others who seem to be worse off than they are, they may feel that they're doing pretty well, that they're pretty good, & of course, this may be reflected in their attitude. Or some people are simply too proud to admit they have any problems. But if you run across someone who absolutely refuses to admit that they have any problems, there's usually not much point in spending a lot of time trying to convince them that they need help.
       16. But you could always try a different approach & ask them a few questions like, "Are you happy? Is there anything that you don't have that you would like to have? Would you like me to tell you your future?" An approach like this which emphasises desires & personal wants over needs or problems may be more effective with such people. Most people who are at all hungry have some key that will reach them. Most can be appealed to by presenting Jesus as the Problem-Solver. However, others will respond more to Jesus presented in a different way--as a Best Friend, or as the Source of Power, or as the Great Creator & Ruler of the Universe etc.

       Connecting People's Problems to Jesus' Solutions!

       17. You have to start where the person is at. If the person has admitted to having a difficult personal problem, you can say, "Jesus cares about you & He loves you very much, & He sees & understands the suffering you're going through. His Word says that He cares for you, & that you can cast your cares upon Him. And if you give your problems to Jesus, then He'll take care of you, & He'll give you the comfort & solutions you need."
       18. Sometimes it's a matter of wording or presentation. You've just got to try to relate to them where they're at. If they say, "Oh, I'm going through this terrible problem right now," & you witness like a lot of the church people do & you say, "Well, you're a sinner & you need Jesus," that's not the right way to go about it!
       19. You have to first of all connect their problem to what Jesus can do for them. What they want to know is, "What's in it for me? Where can I get the help I want?" That's what they're looking for: Help for their problem, comfort in their time of sorrow. So you should tell them, "Jesus can & will help you! He said He'll never leave you nor forsake you. He'll supply all your need! He'll do this & that!"
       20. Then their next question may be, "How can I get Him to do that?"--To which you can reply, "Put your life in His hands & give your life to Him, & then He'll take care of you. He'll take care of everything that has to do with you, all of your problems. He'll help you & He'll be the Comfort & the Friend that you need." And if they don't ask the right question, you can ask it for them. Say something like, "You're probably wondering how all of these wonderful things can happen for you."
       21. It's a matter of approach I'm talking about. It's not changing the basic way we present Salvation, it's just fine-tuning our approach to make sure we're relating to people, to where they're at right there & then. It's sort of connecting their problem or whatever their need is more directly to, "Here's what the Bible says about problems, that Jesus will take your problem if you give it to Him."--And starting out on that basis. We should be telling them all the wonderful things that Jesus will do for them!
       22. You don't have to tell them in the first breath, "Look, you're a sinner & you need to get saved. And if you'll pray this prayer then I'll tell you what Jesus will do for you." Instead, first tell them what Jesus will do for them as though they already had Him. Then tell them, "Now here's what you do to get this help.--You just open your heart to Jesus & receive Him, then you can have all this."
       23. Give them the bait first. Show them, "Wow, look at all you can have & what Jesus will do for you!" Then they'll want to know, "How do I get this? How do I start this process in my life of Jesus helping me with all my problems?" Then you can tell them, "You just ask Him to come into your heart & you receive Him." It's much better to present the positive side first & tell them all the wonderful things Jesus will do for them. Bait them with the positive.
       24. You can tell'm, "If you'll just turn your life over to Jesus--all your fears & tears, your disappointments & broken dreams, as well as all of your problems. He will give you a brand new life!--One of happiness & joy & hope. And not only will you get a wonderful new life, but you'll get a Best Friend, forgiveness of sins, release from guilt, freedom from fear, knowledge of the Future, healing if you're sick, power & grace whenever you need it, protection, supply & provision, as well as a wonderful eternal Home in Heaven! What more could you want? What could be better than that?"

       Although Jesus Solves Problems,
We've Got to Do Our Part!

       25. Of course, we don't want to make people think that the Lord is going to instantly & automatically dissolve every single one of their problems as soon as they get saved, & that they'll never have any problems again. The Lord definitely helps us with our problems & makes them easier to solve, easier to bear, & He does dissolve some of them entirely & completely delivers us from them.
       26. However, there are other problems that He knows are good for us for one reason or another, & He helps us to handle these problems, & gives us the grace & the patience & the love to bear them. So instead of telling people that Jesus will absolutely take away all their problems, we should tell them, "Jesus will help you with your problems, help you to carry them, help you to bear them, help you to solve them.--And the ones He doesn't take away completely, you'll find He will make them so much easier to bear."--Or even a blessing!
       27. We can definitely say, "Jesus will help you with all of your problems. He's the great Solution-giver! He has a solution for your problems!" This is just as good as saying that He's the Problem-Solver, but in a way it puts a little more of the responsibility on the individual. If we tell them that Jesus will give them the solution, it might help them to see that they might have to help carry out that solution, instead of just sitting back & being passive & not having anything to do with or about their problem.
       28. It's sort of like having a wise counsellor that you go to about your problems. The counsellor cannot get rid of all your problems by himself, but he can give you help & counsel & wisdom that you can take back with you & use to your advantage to make things better & easier. Of course, with the Lord, we know a lot of His help is supernatural, He does a lot for us by His supernatural power. But it is a relationship, it is teamwork, & we usually have to do something in the bargain. We have to cooperate with Him. We have to go by His rules & carry out certain procedures in order for Him to do the work in our lives.

       How the Lord Helps People with Their Problems!

       29. It might sound like I'm "straining at a gnat" here in trying to bring out the difference between telling people that Jesus is the Problem-Solver, & that Jesus will give them the solutions to their problems. But I've seen that become an issue before when Christians tell others that Jesus will take away all their problems, & the people get saved & they then find out that they still have a lot of their previous problems to deal with, which can cause them to wonder & question & even doubt. So I just want to be sure that we present this correctly so that the people we witness to won't be surprised when they still have some problems after they've received the Lord. Actually, problems & obstacles & challenges in life are what make us strong.
       30. But instead of being bowled over by their problems & being burdened & crushed by them & being underneath them, they can be on top of them! Jesus can help them be on top of their problems & in control of their problems, & help them know how to handle their problems.--Instead of just sinking under them & being drowned by them with no hope in sight, or feeling that there isn't anything that they can do about them. You can show them that Jesus will lighten their loads & help bear their burdens & resolve the problems.
       31. Of course, there are many times when Jesus does completely eradicate the problem & take it away, but then you usually get another problem that's another challenge, so you can realise that you still need the Lord & have areas in your life in which He needs to work. But sometimes He does completely eradicate the problem, as He often does with illness or disease.--He can miraculously cure a physical ailment so that it's absolutely gone & never comes back again! He often completely solves other problems as well, & gives deliverances that are once & for all complete, & you never have any recurrence of those problems again.
       32. But then there are problems that stay with us for much longer, that we have to battle with & get victories over daily.--"Thorns in the flesh."--2Cor.12:1-10. But these are the problems that the Lord knows are good for us, that will make us strong & will help us to look to Him & be desperate with Him & close to Him.

       Give'm the Answer-Man, Jesus!

       33. I just don't want to mislead people to think that--poof!--once they become Christians, all of a sudden all their problems are forever gone. But at the same time, we do want to be able to tell them how wonderful it is to live for Jesus, & all the wonderful things He does for us! And how miraculous life with the Lord is!--And that there is just no comparison between the life they now live & the life they can live with Jesus in their heart.
       34. So please remember to try to relate to people where they're at right now, & give them the main answer they desperately need: Jesus! "What can I do about my problems?" That's what people everywhere are crying out, "I've got all these problems!--How am I going to solve them?" Just say, "We've got the Answer!--The Answer-Man, Jesus! He is the great Solution-giver!--And if you receive Him into your heart you'll be amazed at the help He will give you & the comfort He will bring to you!" Amen? Praise the Lord! GBY as you keep lifting up Jesus & sharing His Love & Truth & Solutions with all whom you can! ILY!

Copyright (c) 1998 by The Family