I personally have known instant healing on one or two occasions in the course of my life. Other members of my family have known the same. Perhaps you or someone you know can bear witness to the same thing.
However have we realised that nursing the sick and watching over a gradual restoration is just as much an act of God as an instant healing? I am not sure I have ever read Psalm 41 in the New Living Translation before, but part of that Psalm was one of today’s readings in the devotional plan I use: Let me quote the first 3 verses:
“Oh, the joys of those who are kind to the poor!
The LORD rescues them when they are in trouble.
The LORD protects them
and keeps them alive.
He gives them prosperity in the land
and rescues them from their enemies.
The LORD nurses them when they are sick
and restores them to health.”
It was particularly the last two lines quoted above that struck me. It is a shame when we think instant or miraculous healing is more of a witness to God than caring nursing that aids a gradual restoration of health. Both are of the Lord, both are His action and bear witness to Him in equal measure. The Lord who heals us and the Lord who nurses the sick back to health: the same Almighty God, “WHAM BAM!” is not the only way God brings glory to His name and reveal who He is.
In my time of illness, I have known moments of such tender presence at the times when I have felt myself at points of greatest weakness. Such moments have happened often and in diverse places: the G.P’s waiting room, my car, the bath, on a bus, in the garden, in the cinema, in Dobbies! I was saying to a friend the other day that if God could touch me at those moments in a tangible way, then He could have healed me. Perhaps today was an answer to an unspoken question in that conversation with my friend or a reframing of what I experienced at such moments of weakness of body, mind and emotions. God, Father, Son and Spirit was there like a gentle nurse watching over my restoration, being true to His Word in Psalm 41 verse 3.
Those worst moments came and went, thanks to God my nurse and those His nursing and restoring power and care worked through. The display of a charismatic gift of healing, is not “more” of God than the countless people I have known over many years who have lovingly nursed others in their time of need.
Just thinking of a trip to the dentist yesterday. A few years back miraculously given gold fillings were being claimed in some circles. Mine have a gold sheen in some lighting conditions. I think that is just due to them being incredibly old and coffee stained! Personally, I have no problem believing at least some of the claims to miraculously given fillings to be true – well not quite no problem: the gold sheen on my amalgams takes the edge off my whole hearted belief . However the dentist, the drill, the making of the next appointment is God too! By the way, I think God wants to tell someone today that picking up the phone and making an appointment with your dentist is the way His healing power will meet you in response to those prayers about toothache. Don’t delay and prolong your suffering. He wants to heal you of pain that way and in the process give you victory over that cold sweat fear. Two healings instead of just the one await you in the dentist’s chair