Problem: Steps to a Solution

We deal with bad situations or problems differently. Some use the right way and some the worst possible way. You are probably wondering whether there is a right way to deal with a problem  Yes there is but let me first deal with the wrong ways people deal with their issues then I will show you what you should put into practice to get great solutions to problems.

One day, I was walking around the store looking for some medication. As I was walking, I met this lady who was on a wheel chair. She spoke to me and said, “Mum, can I read your palm.” I said NO. I was shocked at her boldness but I was not surprised at the directness and aggressiveness. I still remember her and honestly I do feel sorry for her because I know she does not understand she is in the demonic world. Many people have decided that the best way to get answers to their problems is through psychics and palm readers. This is probably the worst route someone can use to get a solution to their problem. Why? Because anyone who uses a psychic, palm readers, witch doctors, etc. opens themselves up to demonic harassment. If you go to these places to ask question or get solutions, you are actually asking a demon to give you a solution. Demons plans are to kill, steal and destroy therefore they don’t have a good plan for you. Because of ignorance, people go to psychics and witch doctors and then start dealing with a host of issues. If you go to these places, you are telling demons welcome to my life. I am all yours to do with me as you please. This is why, in my list this is the worst possible way someone could take to get a solution to their problem.

Some people deal with their problems by postponing them. Let me break down what I mean. So when I used to drink, sometimes I would be stressed because of a situation so instead of coming up with a solution, I would drink so as to forget what I am dealing with. The problem is drinking is a temporary solution. You forget but the next day you wake up with a headache and the same problem is staring at you. This is a very destructive way of dealing with issues. Not only is one on the way of becoming an alcoholic, in other words you cannot function without alcohol, but also alcohol kills the body slowly. Some people deal with problems by hitting others or insulting people. Again, a problem needs a solution and a problem cannot be shouted away or beaten away. Others run away from the issue. Well, unfortunately it will catch up with you and anyway for how long will you be running away. So how should we deal with problems? We will look at a passage in scripture where Moses is faced with a brand new problem.

Then came the daughters of Zelophehad the son of Hepher, the son of Gilead, the son of Machir, the son of Manasseh, from the families of Manasseh the son of Joseph; and these were the names of his daughters: Mahlah, Noah, Hoglah, Milcah, and Tirzah. And they stood before Moses, before Eleazar the priest, and before the leaders and all the congregation, by the doorway of the tabernacle of meeting, saying: “Our father died in the wilderness; but he was not in the company of those who gathered together against the Lord, in company with Korah, but he died in his own sin; and he had no sons.  Why should the name of our father be removed from among his family because he had no son? Give us a possession among our father’s brothers.” (Numbers 27:1-4 NKJV)

According to the Mosaic Law, it looked as if a son is the one who inherited property. Women did not inherit property so the daughters of Zelophehad knew they had a problem in their hands and they had to present their case to the elders. They were petitioning that they might have possession in the land of Canaan among their father’s brothers. According to Numbers 26:51-53, the bible says “This was the [total] number of the [male] Israelites, 601,730 [twenty years old and upward who were able to go to war]. And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Among these the land shall be divided as an inheritance according to the number of names.” When the first census was done, this is found in Numbers 1:1-46, it included the rebellious generation that had died in the wilderness. Their father had died in the wilderness therefore when the second census was done; he was not counted because he was not alive. And because only men of Israel were counted in the second census, the daughters knew they were not among the 601,730 who had been numbered. The second census counted the men of Israel who were able to go to war. This was to prepare the nation for their conquest in Canaan. If they did not speak up for their father, who else would? According to the rule, they were not to expect any inheritance and their father’s family was going to be extinct and written childless yet he had children. So what did Moses do? He was faced with a new problem in which he did not have a solution to. What did he do?

He took his Problem to God

The first action we always need to take when presented with a problem is to take it to God. Moses brought their case to the Lord. He did not tell them, sorry, the law is the law. You cannot inherit. He took this problem he had never come across before to God. He did not ask the elders what they thought. He did not ask the priests what they thought. He went straight to God who would give him the right solution to the problem he was facing. It is important to take our problems to God. Some of us ask friends and family before ever go to God and by the time we go to God, we are in the middle of a crisis and need him to get us out of it or we already have a solution and we need God to rubberstamp our solution. God is the one with the best solution. He is the one who will guide us. Just because our friends or relatives solved a problem one way, does not mean that is the way God wants us to follow. You see, a problem may present itself differently and the earlier solution may not be the best for the problem at hand even if it may look the same. In 2nd Samuel 5, David finally becomes King over all Israel. The Philistines hear about it and go looking for him.

Now when the Philistines heard that they had anointed David king over Israel, all the Philistines went up to search for David. And David heard of it and went down to the stronghold. The Philistines also went and deployed themselves in the Valley of Rephaim. So David inquired of the Lord, saying, “Shall I go up against the Philistines? Will You deliver them into my hand?” And the Lord said to David, “Go up, for I will doubtless deliver the Philistines into your hand.” So David went to Baal Perazim, and David defeated them there; and he said, “The Lord has broken through my enemies before me, like a breakthrough of water.” Therefore he called the name of that place Baal Perazim. And they left their images there, and David and his men carried them away. Then the Philistines went up once again and deployed themselves in the Valley of Rephaim.  Therefore David inquired of the Lord, and He said, “You shall not go up; circle around behind them, and come upon them in front of the mulberry trees.  And it shall be, when you hear the sound of marching in the tops of the mulberry trees, then you shall advance quickly. For then the Lord will go out before you to strike the camp of the Philistines.”   And David did so, as the Lord commanded him; and he drove back the Philistines from Geba as far as Gezer. (2 Samuel 5:17-25)

It is important to note that David faced the same problem two times. It presented itself it seems, the same way but both times David asked God whether he should go and fight against the Philistines and both times he was told he could but the directions were different. In Joshua 9, Joshua and the rulers of Israel were tricked by the Gibeonites because they did not ask counsel from the Lord. If they asked God about the Gibeonites instead of using their human eyes, they would have known that the Gibeonites were lying to them. So always take your situation to God.

He Waited for a Response

I love watching 100m dash. When the athletes line up, they are told on your mark, get set, then they hear the shot and they take off. Unfortunately, when an athlete gets off before the shot, he or she is automatically disqualified. In order to have a chance to win the race, the athlete has to patiently wait otherwise he will never have a chance to win a medal. It is hard to be on the on your mark position but even harder to be on the get set position. But waiting is important. This applied during Moses time too. In this situation, he asked God a question and God gave him an answer. He had to wait for God to tell him what to do. Some of us struggle with the idea of waiting for God to answer our prayers. For some, a week is enough to give up on God. For others a month is enough and others feel like they have been praying for an issue for so long they can no longer wait. Show me a person who is making mistakes over and over again and I will tell you the person has not learnt to wait on God. Ishmael would not have been born if Sarah did not give up waiting on God. Isaac prayed for his wife and waited for God to answer his prayer and twenty years after marrying his wife, she had twins. He did not take another wife. Elkanah exposed his wife Hannah and put her in a difficult situation when he married a second wife Peninah. Peninah had children but Hannah did not have any therefore it was obvious Hannah had the problem so she walked that difficult road on her own. Not only did he expose Hannah but he brought a woman who caused a lot of heartache in her life. David had to wait for years to become King over Israel even if He had been anointed at a young age. Joseph the governor was not the same Joseph who first showed up in Potiphar’s home. Joseph had to wait on God for 13 years and within that time, God was transforming his character. Moses was in the wilderness for 40 years before God called him into his big assignment. Waiting on God saves us from heartache and through God’s guidance we escape traps the enemy has laid for us to fall into. Waiting on God is a good thing for us. We may not feel it at the time when we have to continue to ask God, but we have to trust and have faith that He only wants the best for us.

He was Obedient

It is clear that Moses had to go and ask God because he had a problem in his hands that he felt he needed to ask God about. God gave him the solution to the problem.

The daughters of Zelophehad speak what is right; you shall surely give them a possession of inheritance among their father’s brothers, and cause the inheritance of their father to pass to them. Numbers 27:7 NKJV

Moses did not argue with God. He did ask him why he said what he said. He just followed what God had told him and he told the children of Israel. In fact God told him that the daughters of Zelophehad were right. Obedience to God is very important. Abraham would not have been called a friend of God if he was not obedient. King Saul lost his anointing as king because of disobedience. In order not to be disobedience, we have to die to self. In other words, we have to crucify the flesh. We are destined to lose battles and get into trouble every time we follow our flesh. Samson followed his flesh. He hanged around women from enemy territory. I wondered why he would not have a wife from his own nation. But he had to have what he wanted. He was strong and no one could do anything to him. Oh how wrong he was. One day, he lost his eyesight and he was ridiculed all because he could not put his flesh in check. Galatians 5 states the works of the flesh, which are adultery, fornication, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, jealousies, envy, murders, and drunkenness just to state a few. Works of the flesh can make the smartest person look stupid. They can make the wisest person foolish. Solomon was the wisest king who ever lived but because of his love for women, he made foolish mistakes that led to great consequences. No wonder he says all is vanity.

The devil has a way making disobedience look like it will benefit us greatly. Of course because he is cunning, he does not call it disobedience. What do you think he did to Eve? He made Eve think that the fruit she was about to eat was better than any other fruit she had eaten before. He made her love the fruit of disobedience and she ate it and gave her husband Adam hence the fall. Beware of the enemy. He is a roaring lion waiting for who he may devour. If you resist him, he will flee away from you. If you welcome him, he will destroy you. There will come times when in order to be obedient you will have to flee from situations. Remember Joseph had to run away from Potiphar’s wife. His obedience paid off in the end. Once we make a choice to obey, then we will eat the good fruit of obedience. Once we make a choice to disobey, then we will have to deal with the consequences of the disobedience because we cannot choose the consequences however we can choose to be obedient or disobedient.

Always remember that there is no problem that catches God by surprise. He already knew that Moses was going to face a new problem. God wants us to be dependent on him because when we are dependent on him, our relationship with him grows. God just simply loves us.

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