The blind beggar called out, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” And Jesus said to him, “What do you want Me to do for you?” And the blind man said to him, Rabbi, let me recover my sight.” And Jesus said to him, “Go your way; your faith has made you well.” And immediately he recovered his sight and followed him on the way. Mark 10:48-52
Have you had weeks and months that just kind of blur together and not much big goes on, and then ‘Boom!’ big stuff happens? Well, this last week was one of those weeks. Let me back up. For about the last four or five months, my left shoulder has been hurting, like bad. It had gotten to the point where I couldn’t even open up my car door without extreme pain kicking in. I suppose it was a pinched nerve or a herniated disc. For most of the last two or three weeks my arm was numb and cold when I woke up in the morning.
I began going to the chiropractor in June two to three times a week. I knew I should have attended to it sooner, just too busy. In early July the chiro said, “I can’t do anything more. You’ve got to go to the doctor. You’ve probably got to get an MRI.” I nodded, but thought: “No way. I’m not going to get an MRI. I’m not going through all of that.”
Second strand of the story: Over the last year, my husband and I have gotten to know a Christian brother better. He’s the kind of guy that’s full of Holy Spirit energy. He’s into dreams and interpreting them, so we like to talk about how God speaks to us. He went on a missions trip to Haiti about a year and a half ago. While there, whoever was leading the group told Brian to take charge of a line of locals who were there for healing. He was to pray for them to be healed. Brian was thrown into just doing it, and God met him. By the end of the day, almost all of the people were healed that he had prayed for.
He came back home thinking, “If God could work through me in Haiti, why can’t he work through me here to pray for people and see them healed?” So he began to pray for people to be healed and things began to happen. Brian began a small group Bible study in our area. He has been inviting us to join us, but it hasn’t been until the last month or so that we have begun to go.
Another guy has been at the small group who also has the gift of healing, Barry. And I sit there with a shoulder that hurts so much I can’t open my car door…I’ve been reading through the Gospels and ‘faith’ seems to be the thing that just keeps jumping out over and over. So after the chiropractor said, “Yup, your shoulder is messed up,” I guess I knew it was time to actually apply faith and open my mouth.
So I did. At the end of the small group, when it was time to pray, Brian asked if anyone needed any prayer. Someone else said something first. And then I finally said, “My shoulder has been really bad lately. I need prayer for it.” So Brian said, “Okay, let’s pray for it.” He prayed for God to heal it, then asked me to move it around. “Nothing.” He prayed for it again. Still nothing. Then another gal said, “Stand up.” Then she had me raise my right arm. She said, “I can feel and see the knot. It’s huge.”
He prayed again. Then he said, “Move it around.” The loudest snap and crack sounded and the gal standing to my right yelled, “The knot is moving! It’s gone!” I moved my arm, and the knot and pinching and pain was gone. That was five days ago. It’s still gone.
There’s more to the story. My husband struggles with anxiety a lot. Like my shoulder pain, it has become more and more distinct and debilitating. He has resisted going to the small group because he’s anxious about having to go to work the next day. My reply is that we all have to go to work the next day, but that doesn’t change anything. He wasn’t going to go this week because of it.
There were guest missionaries there from Albania. They had become Christians through Barry. As Brian was praying for me, the missionary wife was singing quietly over the whole while. I thought it was pretty, but didn’t make much of it. Wayne left as soon as prayer was over. We drove separately so he could do that, our compromise. When I got home, he said: “I wished everyone would have stopped talking when that lady sang. It was like a wave of peace washed over me. I wanted her to sing over me for my anxiety.”
I asked why he didn’t stay then, but his anxiety had gotten the best of him. But he called Barry’s the next day, in an act of faith, and asked if he could come and have them pray for his anxiety. This was even bigger than my shoulder! This anxiety has gripped him all of his life.
So Wayne went, and Barry and his wife and the missionaries prayed over him. The wife sang. Another miracle happened this week. When Wayne left, it was like a load was taken off of him. Peace that he hasn’t known swept over him.
I am not saying that this is a once and for all deal, because fear keeps knocking. As we processed that freedom, we talked about how Jesus is the way and the truth–Satan is a liar. Jesus is all about faith–Satan is all about fear. James 4:7 says to “Resist the devil and he will flee from you.” I say he must flee from us when we take authority in Jesus’ name. I rebuke you fear and anxiety in Jesus’ name.
That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it!