Like many of my lessons, sermons, and articles that are read in this column, the idea or inspiration to write them come through conversations that I have had with people.
Apart from being an avid reader, an attentive listener, a history buff, and an observer of people and events, I am a conversationalist who God has given the gift of gab that I have had to convert from a negative liability into a positive asset.
Through a recent conversation that I had with a very seasoned and accomplished educator, the idea for this article came into my mind.
For not only is it a good and timely topic for an article, but for a sermon as well. Right here, I am going to present to you a few categories with comments and opinions why it is very difficult to help certain type of people regardless of how hard your effort and even struggle might be.
Those Who Are
Hard-headed and Stubborn
In my experience of giving counsel and advice to people in various aspects and areas of life that are important to their well-being as well as others, I have discovered that one of the most difficult groups to help are those who are hard-headed and stubborn.
Having been a part of that group of stubborn people, I am very familiar with those who are hard to help who belong to this category. They are often so set in their ways, opinions, and attitudes that they will reject the truth and good practical counsel even when it is presented to them in a simplistic way.
One of the most hard-headed people who I have ever dealt with over the years (who was the epitome of stubbornness) was a fellow I nicknamed as Diamond Head. This term perfectly describes his hard-headedness.
Regardless of how others and I tried to penetrate through his stubbornness about some crucial issues, he refused to accept our counsel and ultimately lost his wife, family, and business.
Those Who Are
What does it mean to be a block-headed person? A block-headed person is a foolish and stupid person who does not have to be that way. Such people do not necessarily have a mental deficiency that diminishes their ability to use common sense, but a propensity that had formed through habit and practice. I have encountered many in this category in my line of work, as well as a few who were closely related to me through blood. Block-headed people are extremely hard to help or give some prudent and practical advice or counsel.
They will often make some ridiculous decisions to their own hurt and ruin. I have learned to not spend too much time counseling block-headed people because it is truly like casting your pearls before the swine.
The next category of people who are definitely hard to help are proud people. I am perhaps more familiar with this particular category of people (who poses a great challenge when it comes to giving them advice and counsel) because I was once a member of this group. Proud people often reject counsel because they simply hate to admit that they are wrong. They will often go forth with an idea when it has been proven to be wrong or impractical.
In their pride and egotism, they often make decisions that produce much detriment and loss for themselves and others who depend upon their guidance or leadership.
Is this one of the glaring weaknesses that is quite evident to many who have been critical of our present occupant of the Oval Office?
This is a weakness that prevents him from receiving prudent counsel and advice from his own counselors often opting to go with his gut feelings instead. The following words from one of the wisest men who ever lived would truly be a smart move for people in this category who are hard to help to truly consider and heed: “Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.” (Proverbs 16:18)
People Who Reject and Refuse to Change
The final category of people who we are going to consider today who are hard to help are those who reject and refuse to change.
This is especially relevant when we consider all the protesting that is going on in America and around the world for change.
Though the object of this protest is aimed at those in authority who have the power to initiate change, there are many other areas in our culture where people are very difficult to help simply because they are prone and predisposed to reject and refuse change.
It could be in any area of life where people need help and could almost overnight turn their situation around if they would not be so bent on not changing.
Changing is not a negative thing when it is done to enhance and improve one’s well-being.
Many are stuck in a rut and are not going forward or progressing because they have rejected and refused to change. There is an adage that says, “If you always do what you have always done, you will always get what you have always got.” I adopted a prudent saying from a very wise man who is no longer with us that has truly been a proverb and practice in my life that I am going to end with today: “To live is to grow and to grow is to change.”