It was a Super Bowl Sunday I will never forget. It was 2019 and I was in the hospital recovering from a Crohn’s related surgery that had taken place earlier in the week. Saturday was a good day for me and I was on pace to get home that coming Monday. Sunday afternoon I began not feeling well. A few people from the church stopped by and I began to wear down very quickly. I asked my wife to not allow any more visitors to come in. No sooner than I said that there was a knock on the door. I remember during that visit drifting in and out of consciousness. Carrie kept waking me up because it was rude for me to sleep while people were there, but I couldn’t control it. I woke up several minutes later and seemed to feel better. I told Carrie to go home and rest while I watched the Super Bowl. I have no idea who was playing but I’ll never forget what happened after it started. As I was laying there watching the game my heart rate accelerated to 155 bpm (at that time my resting was 45). I called the nurse. My temperature shot up to 104. Things got real in a hurry. They drew blood and ordered a bag of antibiotics. The nurse said, “You are septic and we are preparing you a room in the ICU.” Knowing that might be the case, I called the church to have them start praying. I called my good friend (a med student) to come up immediately. I called Carrie and told her she better come back up asap. While waiting for the ICU room to open, Carrie and Jeff kept rotating cold rags on my face and body trying to cool me down. Miraculously, my temperature started dropping, my heart rate subsided and my white blood count went back to normal before they transferred me to the ICU.
It was on all accounts a miracle.
God can do the miraculous. God can do whatever he pleases. Why then does God choose to heal some and not others? Some will attribute a lack of healing to a lack of faith. Some will even blame a lack of healing from God due to sin in the person’s life. Others say we see no miracles being done because we don’t expect them and therefore don’t pray for them.
If God is a God of love, should He not just heal everyone? Why does God choose to heal one and not another (John 5:3-8)?
As one follows a progression through Scripture he will find healings begin to cease as the church matures and the Scriptures are being distributed. There is no longer the need to validate the gospel or the church as is seen in the book of Acts. Exit the gospels and early church and you will find Paul battling an illness (Gal 4). In 2 Corinthians 12 he was afflicted. Epaphroditus almost died of sickness according to Philippians, and Timothy and Trophimus both were said to be sick in the pastoral epistles.
What does all that mean for us today?
The first thing we must understand is that God does all for His glory. He desires ultimate glory and will receive the glory through your sickness or healing.
How does God receive the glory in your illness?
1. By Healing
I love hearing stories of people who have seen God do amazing things in their lives. The reactions of those who were healed by Jesus must have been amazing. The healing hand of God upon an individual is awesome. I believe God heals.
2. By Helping
Many times God chooses not to heal but to help (Heb. 4:16). We often get so consumed wanting a healing act of God we fail to see His helping. “I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help” (Ps. 121:1). Our God is the One who helps. This is what I wrote about in my blog on suffering. You can read it HERE! God’s grace is sufficient to help and empower you despite the difficulties.
3. By Handing us Over
This is one that I would rather not believe or write about. Job was handed over to Satan for God to receive the glory in his life. Without this tragic scene, the world would not know of Job. How difficult trials would be today without the book of Job! Job is an example of God remaining in control while allowing Satan to destroy him. It might be that the Devil is trying his best to destroy you, your marriage, or your ministry but God is allowing it for your good and His glory.
4. By Heaven
Healing might not come until we see Jesus. God might see fit to allow us to struggle and deal with sicknesses until he takes us home. It could be the healing we pray for comes through leaving it all behind. Sickness and pain cannot follow us there. When we pass from death to life we will know it was worth it all! We will then understand how it all worked together for good (Rom. 8:28).
God’s glory is His priority. How he receives that glory is unique in each of our lives. I trust no matter what situation you find yourself in, as you pray for healing, you would equally pray for God to be glorified in accordance to His will.