I am thinking today of someone I know who has manic depression. More specifically I was thinking of the distress well meaning believers have caused him over the years. On one occasion someone told him they had a picture of Jesus taking away truck load after truck load of his sins! I know the good intention behind what was shared but there are ways of saying things and ways of not saying things!
The other thing I am thinking of though is that he was aware he was the cause of frustration to many believers who were praying for him. Thus far there has been no miracle of healing for everyone to see. I remember however that as we walked and talked together once he turned to me and said, “Kenny my miracle is that I am still here.” That is the daily miracle of more people than we realise.
There are a couple of insights I hope you can take from that:
Number 1: Don’t get so caught up with what God has not done or not done yet, that you fail to celebrate what He has done and is doing. That man, who actually may not even have been a believer at the point he said that to me, was genuinely grateful for God’s help in a way that few Christians around him seemed to rejoice in. Celebrating what God is doing, is not closing the door on what He may yet do.. or not do.
Number 2: Sometimes we fail to appreciate or have the insight of God’s love into what someone in need really wants or longs for. Our need as those who pray or care, may be to see God do particular thing. However it may be that what we long to see is not what those we pray for are craving and yearning for. Someone wrote in response to an earlier blog, saying that the deaf community with whom they worked, didn’t really more than anything want healing as such. More than that they wanted welcome and acceptance. It is good to remember that people are not a ministry project to prove a point, a doctrine, or our faith, but people to be loved and understood with sensitivity. I recall the pain with which someone told me a few years back that the interest some people were showing in them felt like it was interest in a project rather than interest in a person.
Let me apply that to myself: what is the greatest need I am aware of at this moment? Is it for healing of my lungs? Well, that is certainly a need, but it is not my deepest need and would almost be a wonderful extra blessing or bonus. My deepest need is to know that God is with me. It brings me a joy that makes me forget I have any illness when the touch of His reassuring presence is upon me. That touch often comes. May you know that reassuring presence this day. I am not sure there is any greater blessing than knowing that the God who loves us , the God who is for us not against us, is with us.