God, Healing, and Endurance

jesus_035There is a lot of emphasis placed on healing’s in churches, and I am not in anyway, disputing that we should not pray for the sick and hurt by any means.  I have seen so many abnormalities, and fatal illnesses in my life, as I’m sure many have.  Sometimes people may ask, but, it just isn’t fair.  Nothing in this life, I’ve found is fair. It is already written here, about my son, BJ, who was bi-polar and committed suicide.  I’ve known at least two other’s in my church circle, whose son’s did the same thing.  Then, too, Pastor Rick Warren’s son, from the huge Saddleback Church, lost his son to suicide also; and all were bi-polar.  So, I have a huge compassion for the mentally ill, and challenged.  I have a friend of mine too, that is older by some years than I, that had two Down Syndrome daughters.  I don’t know for the life of me how she managed now all these many many years; the oldest, had been really bad in her 50’s in a wheel chair.  Yet, my friend never gave up, and loved God.  It is all His perfect plan for whatever reason, after all. When I was young in my 30’s I worked for a few non-profits, one being Easter Seal, locally, and the other a center which schooled Down Syndrome kids.  I saw small children, blind, deaf, or both, working in the office, typing up all these reports, etc.  It broke my heart to see the struggle and the passionate commitment this one, teacher, that never married, and took these kids she helped home with her in her heart every single night.  I used to think of Mother Theresa, and all the places she went to, helping children, so self sacrificing; doing God’s work. Now, all the tragedies that come across our tv screens, from terrorist bombings, to tornado’s, deaths, and lifelong fights to survive, one way or another.  It is sad, it seems so unfair, and it seems to some that God deserted them.  Our soldiers coming home maimed, some with loss of limbs, then learning to walk all over, with prosthetics.  I think of evangelist Dave Roever, who I first saw on the late Jerry Falwell’s Old Time Gospel Hour, many years ago, having had a grenade blow up in his face,  in Vietnam.  He’s had so many surgeries, and a plastic ear, I cannot even fathom.  But out of tradgedy, comes triumph.  Which is the name of Dave’s ministry, “Tragedy to Triumph” helping other maimed  veterans, going around in a big bus.  http://www.roeverfoundation.org        https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dave-Roever/152322355947 We never know what we will encounter or have to courageously endure in this long life.  I think back on so many that suffered and died at an early age, I knew in my life.  But, I know that my God shall supply all my needs.  Some of these kids now who are autistic, for some reason, wired in their brain, that only God can know, are genius’s playing piano, or in math.  Which I find amazing, since math and I did not get along. I think back too, of our larger than life, President Ronald Reagan, who yelled to Russia, to “tear down this wall”, then getting diagnosed with Alzheimer’s; and no cure.  Then there is Christian, Joni Erickson Tada, who had broken her neck in an accident, Journalist Charles Krauthammer, who broke his back young in a diving accident, but it didn’t stop the once psychiatrist from changing professions to journalism, still an honored figure on Fox News panels. 2Corinthians 12:10 “Since I know it is all for Christ’s good, I am quite content with my weaknesses. ” When God works through the weak, it is obvious that what occurred had to happen because of HIM, thus showing the world HIS love and power.  But, there is another kind of healing here too, that no one mentions, spiritual.  For God heals some physically, emotionally, but also spiritually as well.  That inner healing we all crave.  Sometimes He chooses to use us right where we are, in spite of still not being healed physically.  It is to show others, our faith, endurance, and most of all perseverance, and trudging on in courage towards the unknown. Then I think back too, to the book of Job.  Poor, poor Job, who had so much pride and yet at the same time never lost his faith in God.  He lost everything, accept his God.  Seven children were taken from him and died, money lost.  Job had so many well meaning helpers he couldn’t think straight.  The very first chapter though we see that God allowed Satan to test Job, and test him, he did.  “And the Lord said unto Satan, Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on Earth,a  perfect and upright man, one who fears God, and escheweth (hates) evil?”  So the Lord gave Satan permission to test Job, and take things from him, but not to kill him.  That may seem harsh to us in this day and age…but some of us have to be tested.  Throughout the chapter, Job bemoans his lot in this life, as many of us do too, when tested.  He dwells upon his past in Chapter 29, and all that he has lost, with all his calamities.  Finally, in chapter 42 Job answered the Lord in repentance:  “I know that You can do every thing, and that no thought can be withheld from You.” Then he says, “I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.”  He then prays for his foolish friends, and Job then released, was blessed by the Lord twice as much as he had before. In effect, the Book of Job reveals the death of self, the risen life, the school of God, the emptiness of he world, the ugliness of self-righteousness and above all, the fullness of Christ.  (Expositor’s Study Bible notes ) In the beginning, there was no sickness; thus, there was no healing because it was not needed. 1. God revealed His attitude about health in the creation. All He created was whole and entire, “And God saw everything that He had made, and behold, it was very good” (Gen. 1:31). 2. Sickness was absent from the original creation and will be absent in the eternal Heaven (“neither shall there be any more pain,” Rev. 21:4). Jesus taught His disciples to pray, “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:9). Sickness is temporary (as is death-1 Cor.15:26). God gave satan legal permission to afflict mankind with sickness and death.                          1. Since He had promised man death for disobedience (Gen. 2:16-17), death and its forerunner (sickness) were allowed upon the race (Gen. 3:19). 2. Sickness was figuratively described in Genesis 3:14, where God told the serpent “dust shalt thou eat” and immediately reminded the man “dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.” (David surely alluded to this in Psalm 27:2 “eat up my flesh.”) The prophet Isaiah foresaw the sufferings of Messiah more completely than any other O.T. prophet. He predicted healing would be one of Messiah’s atonement provisions. 1. Isaiah 53 is often called “The Gospel According to Isaiah” due to the accuracy with which he looked ahead eight centuries at the sufferings of Christ! 2. He beautifully describes how Messiah would “bear the sins of many” and make “intercession for the transgressors” because “he was wounded for our transgressions and bruised for our iniquities.” Indeed, “He shall pour out His soul unto death” and Yahweh shall “make His soul an offering for sin.” (The atonement for sin was accurately foretold and confirmed in the New Testament (see 2 Cor.5:21; 1 Peter 3:18, etc.) 3. Isaiah also foretold Messiah’s suffering for sickness. Although the older English translations veiled it, recent works affirm it so, as verses 4 and 5, and other verses in some translations indicate as quoted below: Berkeley: “acquainted with sickness …Surely He has borne our sickness… with His stripes we are healed…” Moffat: “A man of pain, who knew what sickness was…ours was the pain He bore…the blows that fell to Him have brought us healing…” Fenton: “…and by His stripes we were healed…yet the Lord pleased to depress Him with pain…” Young: “A man of pains, and acquainted with sickness – …Surely our sicknesses He hath borne, and our pains – He carried them…by His bruise there is healing for us…He hath made Him sick…”  (From Sure Word Ministries). Romans 8:26 “Likewise the Spirit also helps our infirmities for we know not what we should pray for as we ought but the spirit itself makes intercession for us, with groanings which cannot be uttered.  27. And He Who searches the hearts knows what is the Mind of the Spirit He makes intercession for the Saints according to he Will of God. ” We are to be  conquerers in Christ Jesus who intercedes for all of the battles we may face.   As conquerers, we must look to God as we lift our burdens to him, as he carries our infirmities on His back, “our sicknesses”, diseases, which cause pain and sorrow. II Corinthians 12:5-10 “Of such a one will I glory; yet I myself will not glory, but in my infirmities . “(that I was counted worthy to SUFFER for Christ.) “And then He said unto me, My Grace is sufficient for you, for MY strength is made perfect inn Weakness.  Most gladly therefore will I rather GLORY in my infirmities, that the Power of Christ may rest upon me.”  (If Paul, who was arthritic and old, a man even jailed for he gospel, he went through so humbling and painful experiences of what the carnal nature is, evident that all Christians need it.  Whatever weakens, belittles, and humiliates that proud and willful nature should be regarded by the believer as worthwhile.) Exp. Study Bible Hebrews 4:15-16 “For we have not a High Priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities, but was in all points tempted like we are, yet without sin.  Let us therefore come boldly unto the Throne of Grace, that we may obtain Mercy and find Grace to help in time of need.”   “And He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were sick, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet,(Isa. 53:4) saying: “He Himself took our infirmities and bore out sicknesses.” Mathew 8:16-17 No matter what situation you are in, know that God loves you.  If you have people in your life ill, deformed, maimed, know that even if you have to endure and persevere, God loves you.  He bore it all and will never leave you and loves you and sees your pain. One day there will be a judgment day, for all the murdered (aborted ) babies, for all killed in disasters, some man-made, for the 6 million Jews killed in the Holocaust….We don’t have the answers to why God allowed, but know they reign in Heaven. One day we may have the answers, but, certainly our infirmities will be gone, and we will have new bodies in Christ.  Glory !  That is promise enough!

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