I’m a dentist, and many people come to my office every day. You would be surprised at how many of them are quick to tell me about their problems. They really need someone to talk to, someone who will listen. So I listen for as long as needed and then try to comfort and encourage them. Of course God can solve their problems a lot better than I can, so I always try to bring Him into the conversation.
If they tell me about sickness in their family, for example, I encourage them that God is the best doctor and give them a few examples I know of when He has helped and healed. I also tell them about situations where I have seen Him help others or change lives.
Sometimes the thought crosses my mind, What if this person doesn’t believe what I’m saying or won’t accept it? When that happens, I remind myself that I still should do my best to help and encourage others, no matter what they think. I believe that the gifts God gives us are not for us alone but are meant to be used to help others, and that He has given me the gift of encouragement. I often don’t know what results my efforts will have, but people keep coming and telling me their problems, so I’ll keep doing my best to help them.
Since learning about God’s love from members of the Family International and seeing how they live it in their everyday lives, I try to do the same. I own a hair salon and work there myself, so I have contact with a lot of people. I have found that I can understand their needs, and I try to give them Jesus and His love to help them through their problems. My own life isn’t problem free, but it is richer since I found Jesus and His love, and I want to help others find that same quality of life, and not only for themselves, but so they can improve the situation in their homes, families, and surroundings. It’s not easy nowadays to find a place where you are not just a number, but where you really count as a person. We try to make our hair salon just that. It has become a beautiful atmosphere. We don’t argue, gossip, or complain, and people notice. I always loved my job, but never imagined that I could find even greater fulfillment in it by also helping people in a spiritual way.
When I went through an extended period of illness and medical treatment, my husband began to view me as more of a problem than someone he loved who needed his help, and he found a way out of “the problem” through a relationship with another woman. We divorced after 22 years of marriage, sold the house we were building, and my two daughters and I moved into a borrowed apartment until I could get back on my feet. Some “friends” offered me a partnership in some boutiques they were opening, but in the space of 24 hours they robbed me of the little money I had. I told God to either rescue me or take me from this world.
A few days earlier, two people from the Family International had come into my shop, and I had bought one of their CDs and prayed with them to receive Jesus into my heart. When my world collapsed, I phoned them and arranged to meet again because I felt they had something more than this world could offer. That is when my transformation began. All my inner fears vanished as they taught me God’s Word and I learned to communicate with God through prayer.
I moved from Croatia to Caorle, a small fishing town on the coast of Italy, where I met a man who I led to receive God’s love in Jesus, and he was also transformed. We have since opened a restaurant together. I’ve found that the neediest people are not those who have little materially, but rather those who outwardly appear successful but lack the things that make life truly meaningful. Our restaurant is a place where they can come to be refreshed in body and spirit.