I read a post on Facebook recently that stated that you never find Faith Healers in a hospital. Something about this felt 'off' to me, and I've been pondering the statement ever since. Last night, while sleeping in the camper while my husband drove us through western Wyoming, I realized why I couldn't agree with the thought: I believe Faith Healers work in hospitals every day. God has long been a God of miracles, and I believe He still works those miracles on a daily basis.
Even in the New Testament, people had to go to Jesus or the Disciples to be healed. The Bible never says that Jesus gave a blanket "Everyone in this city will be healed." The sick and the lame and the blind had to come to Him or be found by Him. Mark 2:4 says, "Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an
opening in the roof above Jesus by digging through it and then lowered
the mat the man was lying on" (NIV). Luke 18:35-43 tells of a blind man who called out to Jesus by the road to Jericho and was healed. Over and over, we read about people seeking His help and receiving healing and salvation.
I do believe that God still works these healing miracles through faith alone. I, myself, am a recipient of such grace. Several years ago, while I was still in med school, I went on a medical mission trip to Central Mexico with missionaries who daily live their belief in the Lord's provision. Me? I am a skeptic. I have always been cynical and sarcastic, and med school made me even more so. I believe in the power of prayer, but I also believed (at that time) that God didn't bother with Bible-times miracles any more. I was wrong. One day, as we were exiting our 15-passenger van at the day's clinic site, I turned and walked straight into a barbed wire fence. My face and left eye were sliced and cut up. Blood was dripping down my face. I immediately started thinking, "Oh, no. I am in rural Mexico, and I just cut my face on a rusted wire. This is going to get infected, and I am going to get tetanus" (Yes, that is how my brain works. I've told you before that I am not normal). The missionaries however, IMMEDIATELY, before I had a chance to get my sleeve to my face to put pressure on the wound to stop the bleeding, laid their hands on my face and head and started praying for healing. My skeptic brain was shouting to myself that this-is-crazy-let-go-of-me-and-let-me-start-disinfecting-so-i-don't-lose-my-eye. But as they prayed, I felt my wounds healing. I felt the skin coming back together. I felt the bleeding drying up. I felt my vision clear. I felt the pain go away. After they had finished praying, all that was left on my face was a few drops of dried blood. No scratch. No cut. No scar. No eye injury. No other evidence that I had just wrestled with rusted barbed wire. God had healed me through the faith of the missionaries alone. Since then, I have heard countless stories and seen many miraculous healings performed by God in the Third World (My personal heart is for South America. I had always wanted to be a missionary to Africa or India, but God has called me time and again to serve in South America, and has changed my heart to where I want to live there. I dream of living and working in the Andes with the local people groups. Maybe someday He'll let me live this dream). Anyhow...
I have also seen similar miracles in the United States. For 15 years, I lived in a hospital pediatric ward and ER. I took care of babies and teenagers and young adults. I saw ATV accidents and infections and fireworks explosions. I saw God work every single day of my working life. I saw Him use chemotherapy to save the life of preschoolers with leukemia. I saw babies born with HIV grow up and thrive and have normal lives. I saw kids who had fallen off roofs get up to run and play another day. God works through the doctors and nurses and medicines that He has given us in our world. It is a privilege to be a part of this world. Intubating a 4 week old baby with RSV can save its life. Vaccines prevent the spread of some of the world's most debilitating diseases. When was the last time you saw a child with polio? Or rabies? Or tetanus? When we were children, childhood leukemia was a death sentence. Today, over 95% of children with ALL survive and do well. All because of God. God gave us medicines for a reason. He has provided us with Tylenol and Motrin and Benadryl for our use and benefit. He wants us to use them. He wants us to have the faith to be healed. He wants us to follow Him. He wants to use the doctors and nurses and your faith to make you well. He wants you to "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest" - Matthew 11:28 (NIV).