Prayer and Healing

Why not jump into the topic that eventually arises when pain, suffering and grief persist? What about healing? Well-meaning people sometimes anchor conversations with questions about the degree of faith needed to experience God’s healing. When my parents met with doctors regarding my polio diagnosis in 1950, the orthopedist said I’d have double braces and crutches if I were ever to walk again. Nevertheless, until just last month, that was not the case. But due to muscular skeletal issues, I’ve experience major spinal surgeries, and pain has been my companion for years.

A good night of sleep, a hot tub soak, a passage of scripture that pulls me toward the Lord, writing notes or sending texts to encourage others, a massage or a medication — all have brought me levels of healing. Thankfully, I have not faced people who ask repeatedly, “But don’t you want to be healed? Are you sure you’ve confessed all your sins?” But Joni Eareckson Tada, a quadriplegic for over 50 years, certainly has!

Let me share one insightful encounter she had when an earnest person approached her after church, imploring her to have greater faith so she could be healed. Together they read Mark 2.3-5.

[3] And they came, bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men. [4] And when they could not get near him because of the crowd, they removed the roof above him, and when they had made an opening, they let down the bed on which the paralytic lay. [5] And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”

What Joni gently pointed out was verse 5, “And when Jesus saw their faith.” Having heard Joni speak, I believe her tone conveyed not conquest or one-up manship. I believe she simply looked closely at the passage and applied it, explaining she was grateful to all who pray for her.

Can God heal grief, pain and suffering? He’s God, the Almighty. Of course he can! But I believe, by faith, he uses these difficulties, as grievous as they are, to refine. What truly needs the brace to correct my walk is my heart.

One thought on “Prayer and Healing

  1. On one level, I have heard the Lord ask — Do you want to get well? and concurrently, He shows me that living with a thorn doesn’t mean I am not getting well.


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