Question:

Thank you for your time. I just found this site and have been blessed by it!

I recently moved and met a woman who needed someone to talk with. Her husband had just tried to murder her (he is now in prison) and she was looking for a place to live. My husband and I helped her with a few things, like moving into an apartment, bringing her meals and with emotional support. We constantly gave her words of encouragement from Scripture. She said she believed in God. This woman works with sex offenders and listens to detestable stories all day long. She was also molested as a child by her brother. As I get to know her, I am finding a woman filled with distrust for anyone, she does not even trust God, she only picks and chooses what fits her life from the Bible. When we are together, I tell her about God and His word as much as I can and she said she likes learning so much about him. I bought her a Bible and encourage her to read it, which she does only occassionaly.

In the meantime, she has an 11 year old son whom she brings home after school and keeps him there. Not wanting to allow anyone to "hurt" him, he is only allowed to do anything if she is with him. I have offered to help her with her son, and she will let me pick him up from school when she is in a bind but she truly doesn't trust me, especially lately. Her son has been talking about 'something in his room' that is scaring him. I was telling him about Christ, His love for him and His mighty power. This woman seemed to be unsure about our conversation. Now she does not let me spend time with him alone at all.

I honestly don't know what to do. I want to show her the love of Christ and be there for support; however, I am not really enjoying my time with her. She tells me she believes in the Lord. I told her even the demons believe, but it is our faith in Christ and our obedience to him by trusting in his Word which saves us. An added disturbance is that she is now speaking to her husband in prison and wanting to bring him back into her home. This is not a good decision. I seem to be making very very slow progress and the Lord seems to be opening her heart even more slowly. What should I do? Should I continue to be a part of her life?

Thank you for your time, may the Lord continue to bless you and your ministry.


Answer:

You can only teach and encourage. You cannot make the decisions for another person. She has a tremendous amount of emotional baggage that she constantly refreshes due to her choice of careers. There is little you can do about it.

"I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase" (I Corinthians 3:6). A teacher of God's Word doesn't always see the results of his labors. Sometimes you are the person who plants or the one to water. Someone else might be there for the harvest.

Do what you can, but don't feel as if you have to tie yourself down to this one person until she converts. Jesus pointed out, "Do you not say, 'There are still four months and then comes the harvest'? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest!" (John 4:35). There are so many that needs to be taught and not enough teachers. If you aren't making progress, move on to someone else, trusting that God will send others into her life to bring her to the truth, if it is possible. But also remember that teaching is compared to farming. Farming takes a lot of patience. It is a long time between planting seeds and harvesting the results. "Therefore be patient, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, waiting patiently for it until it receives the early and latter rain. You also be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand" (James 5:7-8).

Thank you for your words of wisdom and for the scripture verses. I have been blessed by them.

Thank you also for your ministry. You are truly touching lives for Christ. I will pray for you and for your ministry.