What To Do When You Can’t

What do you do when the person you’re trying to help won’t listen? When the person won’t open their eyes to the truth? When you’ve tried every possible thing you can think of and you just. Can’t. Get through to them. When they’re making things worse on themselves and you can’t make them stop. When they’re refusing to do the things they need to just because it’s hard. When they seem to be doing everything in their power to hurt themselves and cause themselves more pain.

When it seems like it’s an uphill climb. When you feel like you’re not getting anywhere. When you feel like your stuck in one spot on the river fighting against the current and not making any progress. When you don’t have all the answers to all their questions. When you don’t have the foggiest idea what to say. When you feel such weight upon your shoulders to take care of them and you just can’t because you’re not capable of doing that right now. When you feel like you’ll be crushed under the pressure. When there’s such a burden upon your heart and you just. Can’t. Lift it on your own.

I don’t know. I don’t know what you do in these circumstances and situations. I don’t know. I hate that I don’t know. If I knew then maybe I’d be a better friend to those who need me. If I knew then maybe I wouldn’t get so frustrated. If I knew… But I don’t. I don’t know. I just. Don’t. Know. The best that I can tell you is to ask God for strength, ask Him to open the eyes of your friend, encourage your friend to read the scripture even if you have to remind them over. And over. And over. And over. And over. Remind them to pray, even if they don’t and even if you have to repeat it a billion times. Encourage them to talk to someone with more experience than you, even if you have to drag them to that person to get them help.

You can’t always do it on your own. You can’t even always do it with a whole group of friends. Maybe you can’t do it at all and God has to be the one to do the actual work, while you’re just the one opening the door or something. I don’t know. I don’t know everything, no matter how much I wish I did. But if you can do even a little bit to keep their heart beating, to keep them going, to just be there for them when no one else is, do it. No matter how hard it is. No matter how much it seems like you’re just going over the same three things over and over and over and over again. You have to keep going. Because you may be the only person they have. You may be the only person who’s willing to build them up when they and everyone else around them is trying to tear them down. They may need you. You may be their only defense against others and themselves.

And maybe what you think your purpose is in helping them and what God’s purpose for you helping them is are two different things and you won’t see that right away. You may not see it until even years later. But there is a purpose to it. I know that much.

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” ~ Jeremiah 29:11

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