Most people, when faced with overwhelming trouble or sickness, have to go through it without a miracle. This is a sad, confusing reality. We hear stories of miracles and may have experienced them, but the truth is, a greater number of people do not experience the miraculous. Is healing arbitrary? Is God unjust? Before I become discouraged or blame God, there are more pertinent questions I must ask myself.
Have I prayed, believing?
“You do not have because you do not ask” (James 4:2). “Then He spoke a parable to them, that men always ought to pray and not lose heart” (Luke 18:1). Prayer is intimate, two-way communication with God. When we pray, we must believe that God hears us and wants to answer our prayers. “And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who comes to him must believe that He exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him” (Hebrews 11:6). Sometimes we must persevere. “Suppose you have a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say, ‘Friend, lend me bread. And suppose the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. I can’t get up and give you anything. I tell you, even though he will not get up because of friendship, yet because of persistence he will surely get up and give as much as is needed” (Luke 11:5–8). Sometimes we must find creative ways to pray. “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you” (Luke 11:19). The Bible is full of promises and illustrations that show what happens when God’s people pray fervently for miracles.
Have I fasted?
“However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting” (Matthew 17:21). “Is this not the fast that I have chosen: To loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, to let the oppressed go free, and that you break every yoke? Then your light shall break forth like the morning, your healing shall spring forth speedily, and your righteousness shall go before you; the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard” (Isaiah 58:6, 8). When is the last time you fasted for the oppressed to go free? This passage says that if we fast, addiction and sin and depression will be taken off of people’s backs and healing will spring forth.
Have I recommended that someone with an anointing from God to pray for the sick be called?
“And they were offended at Him. But Jesus said to them, ‘A prophet is not without honor except in his own country.’ Now He could do no mighty work there, except that He laid His hands on a few sick people and healed them” (Mark 6:1-5). Jesus was anointed to pray for the sick. He was limited by people’s lack of belief but was still able to lay His hands on people and heal them. The gifts and callings of God are without repentance. In 1 Corinthians 10, we find a list of spiritual gifts that includes healing and working of miracles. In addition, in every church, there are people who should be called on to pray for the sick. “Is anyone among you sick? Then he must call for the elders of the church and they are to pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord; and the prayer offered in faith will restore the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up, and if he has committed sins, they will be forgiven him” (James 5:14,15).
Have I encouraged the person to listen to doctors and take medicine?
“Then Isaiah said (to Hezekiah), ‘Take a lump of figs,’ so they took and laid it on the boil, and he recovered” (2 Kings 20:7). Wisdom comes from God. God uses doctors and medicine to heal people. There is a journey that only those who have been through a difficult illness understand. Take time to listen and let Jesus comfort through you.
Have I used discernment to determine if the sickness has an emotional root?
Psychologists tell us that a large percentage of hospital beds are occupied by people with stress induced illnesses. What goes on in our minds affects our physical bodies. According to Lifescript.com, cancer, diabetes, heart problems, even colds can be precipitated by emotional factors. “A merry heart does good, like medicine, But a broken spirit dries the bones” (Proverbs 17:22). Counseling may be needed before there can be healing.
Have I warned the person to turn from a sinful lifestyle?
“Afterward Jesus found him in the temple, and said to him, ‘See, you have been made well. Sin no more, lest a worse thing come upon you'” (John 5:14). Sin has consequences. Sometimes, sickness is one of those consequences.
Have I recognized that there is “. . . a time to die” (Ecclesiastes 3)?
“It is appointed unto man once to die” (Hebrews 9:27). Some people are not healed because their appointment is coming up. And it is not always scheduled in old age. But our business is to keep praying in faith, knowing that God’s will is always perfect.
Are you believing for someone to be healed? The Bible is filled with faith-building truth to help you fight the good fight of faith. Do you want to be healed? Jesus asked the man at the pool, “Will you be healed?” prompting him to make a confession of faith. Healing is real, it is for today, and it is for you!
Heavenly Father, I believe I have access to healing because of Your mercy and according to Your Word. I am asking You to heal me. Your Word promises, “Therefore I say unto you, whatever things you desire, when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you shall have them” (Mark 11:24). Your Word does not merely contain truth—it is truth. John 17:17 declares, “Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.” Thank you for the promise of 2 Samuel 7:28: “Sovereign Lord, you are God! Your Word is trustworthy and established truth, and you have commanded these good things to your servant.” God, because Your Holy Spirit-breathed Word says, “He sent His word and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions,” I can boldly say You have healed me with Your Word and it is an absolute, accomplished fact. Pain, sickness, disease, torment, affliction, you have no place in my body, my soul, or my spirit! I am healed, because God has healed me! “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities; who heals all your diseases” (Psalm 103:2, 3).