Wednesday, October 29, 2008

ANSWERED PRAYER




I am convinced that the Lord God responds to every prayer we utter. Many times we are unaware of the answer because He doesn't answer in the way we envisioned. God's ways are not our ways... and we often limit Him with our feeble imaginations.

Sometimes when God heals, it is a "miraculous healing"... such as when Jesus opened blinded eyes, cured the woman who had been bleeding for twelve years, or made the lame to walk again. I believe He healed my heart when the massive blockages that had shown up on the first nuclear scan and been confirmed on the second nuclear scan were gone when the heart catheterization was done. (The awesome power of prayer!)

Other times God's healing can come "progressively"... such as when someone has suffered an illness, a heart attack or stroke... or been in an accident of some kind. Their prognosis is not good at all... but despite the doctor's negative predictions, they begin to improve... little by little... until they recover.

We may think of healing as the absence of sickness and pain... the freedom from disease or infirmity. I believe there is another kind of healing... at least for believers.

A special pastor of mine used to pray for "God's ultimate healing" when he prayed for the sick during our intercessory prayer meetings. I had never heard that term before I heard him use it, but the more I thought about it, the clearer it became.

What he meant by the "ultimate healing" was to leave behind the sick, injured, or diseased "body of flesh" that they were "wearing" on this earth, and to "put on" the new perfect body that Jesus promised for all His children once they leave this life on earth behind.

The Word talks about different kinds of sickness and disease. When Lazarus was so sick... and Mary and Martha were urgently calling for Jesus to come quickly and heal him, Jesus told his disciples that this was not a "sickness unto death but for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it."(John 11:4) There are illnesses from which we will recover... but there are others which are a "sickness unto death". In this situation, death is the "ultimate healing"..

Deep down, we all know that each and every one of us will have "a day to die"... a day to pass from this temporary, finite world into an eternal, infinite world where the Lord waits for us now.


As believers, our desire is to be with Jesus... to be in His presence.... and to "rule and reign with Him" forever. To be with Jesus means that we leave this world behind us.

The apostle Paul said that "to be absent from the body was to be present with the Lord". For a believer, it means that when we take our last breath on this earth, the next breath will be with Jesus.

None of us are looking forward to our own death... or to the death of those we love. It is so hard when those who are most important to us are gone, and we can't see them or speak to them.


My mother and I were extremely close. All of my life it had been just the two of us and we depended on each other for everything. Even so during her last days following her massive heart attack, I asked the Lord to "take her home". She was in so much pain. Each time the medications wore off and she "came to herself", she would cry out to God to take her home. She begged Him to help her... and He did.


The Lord “healed” her. He answered our prayers with His "ultimate healing". Now she is no longer in excruciating pain with a heart damaged beyond repair. She is whole and healthy and happy... and with the One she loves more than life itself.

I envision her often in Heaven. She is with Layna Grace, the baby Samantha lost several years ago... and with Clifford the big red golden retriever that I am convinced was an "angel" the Lord "loaned" to us for a season. Clifford came into our lives and touched us with warmth and peace... and then he was gone.

I picture them running and playing... and being so full of joy, peace, and love. And it takes away some of "the sting" of their absence. There is no where my mother would have rather been than with Jesus. No one has ever loved Him more than she did... and to be in His presence was what she desired most.


The enemy wants us to be afraid... and to go kicking and screaming from this world... dreading what is ahead... but as believer's we know that God is with us always. We have nothing to fear from His hand.

"Where could I go from Your spirit? If I go to the heavens you are there. If I rise on the wings of dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me; your right hand will hold me fast...." Psalm 139: 7-9.

Our days are in His hands. We have nothing to fear from the Lord... and only Heaven to gain. The end of this life can sometimes be viewed as "God's Ultimate Healing".

Putting our trust and our faith in a kind and loving Creator is the smartest thing we will ever do.

Hold fast to Him... as HE holds fast to you!

Trust in His love and never be afraid.

1 comments:

samantha said...

I miss Layna Grace every day. I know that her short life even from the womb made a difference though. It changed me from the inside out and taught me to appreciate life so much more... not to take one breath for granted. It also made me that much more grateful when our Connor Judson arrived. If I hadn't have lost Layna, we might have never had Connor. One doesn't replace the other, but I can't imagine life without him! Reminds me of that old song... "sometimes I thank God for unanswered prayers."