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TITLE: I know you're right but....
By Dan Langerock
10/07/05
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We often want to help people with advice and other ways but sometimes they are not ready for that help. This is especially true in the spiritual sense, then we must trust God to do what we cannot.
I Know You're Right But....
by Dan Langerock

Trying to help people can be exasperating. You give advice and it seemingly goes in one ear and out the other. Here are several reasons why this happens.

I don't want to make the changes in my life.

"I am afraid of consequences. My family may turn against me. There will be no one around to help me if I do what you suggest."
The person is too insecure to actuate good advice even though it is right. You are probably not the first or the last who will give advice to them, but they never do anything about it for the reasons listed above and others.

"I just want to complain about what is happening, but I don't want to change the circumstances."

They have become 'comfortable' in the complaining mode and don't want to change anything that would disrupt it. Some people just like to hear themselves talk, so they complain because they have nothing more worthwhile to say.

"I just want attention from you and others."

Everything some people do is geared toward getting attention. It may be illness, circumstances, or whatever, but they don't want to take remedial action to change what is happening to them. Instead of having a normal conversation with others, they have reverted to controlling the conversations with talk of their illnesses, but when you suggest a way to take care of it or diet changes, they turn off their 'hearing aid'.

My way is better than what yoiu are suggesting.

"What you are saying to me has merit, but my way is better"

. People often don't want to change also because they didn't think of the suggestion you or others made, so they won't do it. Still other people will only take advice from certain people. This one is maddening because a lot of times it is the very thing you said to them, yet it had to come from a certain person in order to register in their mind.
What I have learned to do in these circumstnaces with this type of person is to try once to help them with words. Then, if they don't respond, I figure they are not ready to listen yet because the situation is not bad enough or whatever. This is the painful part, to watch them suffer because they won't change until they are ready. A common example is what we go through with our kids. We can talk until we are blue in the face, but some things, most things, they will not learn until they go through something similar themselves, if ever.
When I see a person will not listen, I commit them to prayer and let God handle what is happening in their lives. Then, I wait for an opportunity to help them when I see they have changed their thinking. Maybe try a different way of approaching the subject when the time seems appropriate. Sometimes this change happens in a short time while others it may take years, but now it is up to God. He has better ways to accomplish what needs to be done, his wisdom is infallible. The hard part, as you know, is leaving it with God--not taking it back. But, as we grow spiritually, this part will become easier to accomplish.
The important thing is not to write the person off or give up on them in some way. You have done all you can do, now it is time to take it to the next level by giving it to God and leaving it in His hands. I Peter 5:7 says, "Cast all your cares upon Me, because I care about you." God would not make this statement unless He meant it, but it is our job to exercise our faith by letting Him handle the impossibilities in our lives and those of others.
The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
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