Last night I went to a friend of mine’s 40th (there now you know my soon to be age!) at which was another friend who is a vicar. I have known him for years, since before he became a Christian, and I think that can make you take things for granted about a person, or rather to lower your expectations about a person.
He is a very genuine and straightforward person, in fact sometimes he is tactless. He just doesn’t really know how to lie and he isn’t political. Last night he told a friend of mine about the number of people God has healed through him: full-on riddled with cancer to complete remission cures. He hasn’t just performed one such healing but several.
What do we do with stories like this? We can dismiss it out of hand as a lie or as pretending to be cured in order to please, or as being swept along in the moment. We can treat it as true but not really having any impact on me or we can say, this is true,what does it mean for/to me?
There are many questions raised by such stories, but the one for Christians to focus on is this – do I really believe that God can and wills to perform miracles in my life and the lives of others?
When we pray, do we pray in expectation of sucess? I think I have forgotten to pray in expectation of an answer, but I know that when I did finally pray for someone to truly love and to love me, and really ask God for what I wanted then my husband appeared and that’s not the only instance of answered prayer, it’s just the smallest miracle that has made the biggest difference in my life. My spiritual director used to reassure me that God desires our deepest desires for ourselves – if we are facing towards him as opposed to turned away – and this does often turn to healing.
I think we should ask God for what we want, be open about our desires and needs and expect an answer. And if we don’t get the answer we expected or were thinking we wanted then we need to ask God why. But we definitely need to know where we understand on the matter of healing.