When you're confused about why and who God heals, do this instead

Originally published Friday, 24 July 2015.

Taking a good look at [the ten lepers], Jesus said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.”

They went, and while still on their way, became clean. One of them, when he realized that he was healed, turned around and came back, shouting his gratitude, glorifying God. He kneeled at Jesus’ feet, so grateful. He couldn’t thank him enough—and he was a Samaritan. Luke 17:14-16 (MSG)

Xylon fingered some bumps on his right hand side, "I think I've got shingles."

I slid across the bed and stood next to him fingering the raised bumps, "It looks like shingles. You better get to a doctor tomorrow before we are away for a week."

I said it casually but fear had already made its way into my voice.

You see almost four years earlier Xylon had shingles, and a few months later he was diagnosed with lymphoma, a cancer that attacks the immune system.

We knew until Xylon's next scan over a month away from then that we would be fighting the enemy of our souls and the shadow of death that cancer opened the door too.

We prayed right there that night that the devil would not steal our rest or our joy from the next 10 days of holiday. 

We were headed to the exact place where a year earlier Xylon had stood and experienced God healing him. The place where Xylon tells people he knew he no longer had cancer – not because of medicine – but because God heals.

Then we returned from our holiday and Xylon went for his biannual PET scan.

This is where the part about God healing my husband gets messy. 

The next day the Oncologist phoned. "It looks like there has been a recurrence. You need to see a Haematologist about treatment options."

'Not this, not again,’ we thought.

The Haematologist gave us hope. Told us a biopsy would confirm whether or not it was cancer, that there was a 35% chance of a false positive on the PET scan.

We fought for joy. We tried to remember that we believed God had healed Xylon. We spoke about how all those weeks before we’d felt that the enemy of our souls was out to steal our joy, to take credit from God. 

A week ago, we got the results of the biopsy and they showed, “No cancer”. 

It would be easy for me to say, “I knew all along that it would be clear because I know God healed Xylon.” 

It would be easy to say but it’s not true. 

I doubted. 

I let fear win many times while we waited for the results.

I know healing is complex.  

I know God doesn’t heal everyone and I don’t understand why. 

I love how Abby Norman puts it that her feelings about healing are more jumbled and complicated then she ever expected. I get that.

And I still doubt. I still wonder if what Xylon felt as God healing him truly was his creator reconfiguring cancerous cells. I guess it shows that maybe I don’t really trust God with our lives as much as I think I do. 

But I’m not beating myself up about it. I don’t think God would want that. I think he would want me to like the one leper out of ten who realised they were healed and ran back to thank Jesus. 

One leper out of the ten who didn’t wonder if this healing was forever. 

One leper out of the ten who just saw healing in the moment and couldn’t wait to say, “Thank you, thank you, thank you.”

One of the ten who says, “I don’t understand it but my heart is full of gratitude.”

One out of the ten who kneels at Jesus’ feet and can’t thank him enough for his gift of healing.
And there is the part of me who asks what if Xylon’s scan wasn’t clear? What would I be writing then? How would I fight back with joy then? 

I hope like Margaret Feinberg I’d be able to say that "Praise wins the battle. Every. Single. Time." (tweet this)

Ponder: What are your feelings about healing? Have you experienced healing from God before? Are you still waiting for him to heal?

Prayer: Thank you, thank you, thank you, God.

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- This was orginally published on my site in January 2014. To read more devotionals like this go to ilovedevotionals.com