Jesus healed the leper by touching him. He healed the demon-possessed man with a word of command. The woman with bleeding was healed by touching the edge of his robe. He told the paralysed man to get up and walk, but only after he had first forgiven his sin.
He enabled a man to speak by spitting on his fingers and touching his tongue. He healed a blind man by spitting on his eyes (interestingly only a partial healing first time round, though complete healing quickly followed.) He healed the centurion’s servant from far away.
Many people were healed straight away. With Jairus’ daughter and Lazarus, the healing was delayed and circumstances were allowed to get even worse before he stepped in.
Jesus told some people they were healed because of their faith. Sometimes he declared people healed because of the faith of their friends or family. On other occasions there is no indication that anyone had any faith at all- Jesus healed out of compassion.
Surely this teaches us two things:
- Jesus heals– his power is greater than sickness and blindness and diseases and even death. There is nothing beyond his power to heal.
- There is not a formula– Jesus healed in different ways then and he heals in different ways now.
I have seen too many people damaged by well-meaning people making assumptions about what God is going to do in a situation. When the healing fails to come in the way or timeframe that is expected, people have been left feeling that it must be their fault, or God doesn’t care about them, or maybe their faith isn’t great enough.
The truth is God will heal how God will heal- instantly, gradually, miraculously, through medicine, on earth or in heaven. So yes, we need to pray for healing and we need to expect God to heal, but we also need to trust him to do it in his time and in his way.
Also, this a final invitation to anyone who would like to take part in the series I am planning for Write 31 Days in October, looking at how God speaks through songs and uses them to build our faith.
Over the 31 days, I am planning to share some of my own stories of songs that have impacted me, and also to share some of the background stories to songs being written, but I would love to share some of your stories too, of songs that God has used to speak to you, encourage you or comfort you in a particular situation.
If you have a song or hymn that has meant something special to you and you would like to share your story here, I would love to invite you to write a guest post for this series. If you are interested, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org in the next few days, letting me know which song you’d like to write about, and I will send you more details. (You don’t have to have the post written by then, but I will be looking for them to be completed by the last week in September so that I can work out the best order for the series.)