I have a friend who struggled for years to get along with his son. He tried his best to be loving and understanding, but invariably they would end up in arguments. He prayed against the contention, quoted Scripture, asked God to help, but nothing improved.
Meanwhile, he learned that a boy on the neighborhood baseball team he coached was from a single mom home and was struggling with his schoolwork. So he started bringing the boy home from baseball practice with his son, and he tutored him, mentored him, and became a father figure in the boy’s life. This boy looked up to him in a great way. About six months after the father took the boy under his wing, his relationship with his own son began to improve. They got closer and started doing things together. Today, they’re the best of friends.
We all face challenging situations and troubled relationships that we’re believing will turn around. We’re praying and declaring God’s promises, but nothing is changing. As was true for my friend, the secret to solving some problems isn’t in praying more or working harder; it’s in helping someone else solve their problem.
The Scripture says, “After Job had prayed for his friends, the Lord restored his fortunes and gave him twice as much as he had before” (Job 42:10). Can you imagine how many times Job had prayed for himself when he was dealing with all of his great losses and for his healing? It’s good to pray and release your faith, but don’t stop there, because there are times when your breakthrough is tied to helping someone else get their breakthrough.
When you make sacrifices to help other people’s dream come to pass, God will always help make your dream come to pass. Don’t live focused only on yourself—your problems, your sickness, your trouble at work. Go be a blessing to someone in need. Sow a seed with your finances or a word of encouragement.
Go visit your coworker who’s in the hospital and pray for them. Call your friend and speak faith into their dreams. Take your elderly neighbor an evening meal. The Scripture says, “Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to act” (Proverbs 3:27).
When you know you can be a blessing, when you have the resources to help a person in need, or when you can teach them the skills you’ve learned, don’t put it off. When you help solve their problem, you’re not just being good to them; you’re setting a miracle in motion for yourself. Giving your time, energy, and resources is what’s going to open the windows of heaven and cause you to reap a harvest.
Joel Scott Osteen is an American pastor, televangelist, and author, based in Houston, Texas. Osteen has been called the “most popular preacher on the planet” and is often listed as one of the most influential religious leaders in the world.