Read: Mark 9:14-29

This story reveals that all challenges are not equal; some are very stubborn. You can imagine the situation in which Jesus’ disciples found themselves; people have identified them with Jesus and they probably have cast out demons in the past but this particular demon refused to give way. No matter how difficult a challenge or situation is, there is always a strategy to solve it and that strategy is with God. What Jesus’ disciples could not fix, Jesus fixed it, what nobody can do, Jesus can. When you have prayed and done everything you know how and the unfavourable situation persists, then know that you are dealing with a stubborn challenge.

  • The first thing is to do is to acknowledge that it is a stubborn situation and the first place to look is inwards. Most problems that persist are not caused by external forces but internal factors. Ask yourself some questions. Is there any unconfessed sin in my life? Sin makes people lose battles; it makes people lose the presence of God; it even sets people up as targets for the enemy. When you look inwards, you may discover that you are the enemy of your own progress. Examine yourself, take stock, and don’t spiritualize everything. A lot of people have issues with attitudes, some have issues with relationships; the impressions you make matters a lot; a smiling face, for instance, goes a long way. It can also be spiritual. How do you analyze what is going on in your heart? It is not every signal in your heart that you must take seriously, some can be the enemy trying to get your attention to do the wrong thing. Learn to shut the mouth of the enemy and declare the word of God; silence the voice that is trying to steal the word of faith from your heart. Acknowledge that you can make mistakes. Examine your life; are there places you need to make restitution? Is there anyone you are holding in unforgiveness? Do you in any way have improper consecration? These can give the enemy a foothold. Look at the battle Ai in Joshua 7 for instance; the all-conquering children of Israel began to suffer defeat because of a Babylonian garment; an accursed thing, an agent of defilement. Is there any accursed thing in your life that you are holding on to? Looking inwards is not limited to your heart alone; it involves looking into your house and your environment. Observation goes before discernment.
  • Study to know more about the issue – Jesus asked questions about the boy from his Father. If Jesus asked questions, you must ask questions. Read. Study. Knowledge is always a plus, the Bible says “through knowledge shall the just be delivered”. Prov. 11:9. The more you know, the better your prayer. Know the contributing factors; are there things you should be doing that you are not doing? Are there things you are doing that you should stop? Are there some simple adjustments you need to make? It is amazing how simple lifestyle adjustments can produce tremendous results.
  • Carry out a comprehensive repentance – don’t be partial in your repentance. Psa. 51:6 says “behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts; and in the hidden part thou shall make me know wisdom”. For personal repentance, God desires truth in your heart. It is only a broken and a contrite heart that qualifies for divine intervention. 1 John 1:8-9.


to be cont…………

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