The Nature of God – Part 8
[If you are just now stumbling onto this post without having read the various parts in this series from the beginning, I strongly urge you to go back to the start and continue on from there through each successive post. None of these individual entries stand on their own, and you may wind up with little but confusion and unanswered questions by starting here. That is easily done by entering “The Nature of God” in the search box on the home page, which will list links to all available parts.]
I used to watch this guy on television who did miraculous cures right there on camera, in a big auditorium. People on crutches and in wheelchairs walked, cancers were cured, and all manner of illnesses and ailments were done away with. It was impressive. All he wanted was for me to send in a little money to support his ministry. Then after a while, he went off the air. I found out later that he was convicted and sent to prison for mail fraud. Sometimes, people who seek out a career in ministry do so for the wrong reasons.
I had my own minor ailments, none of which I cared to publicize, because they weren’t anything to brag about or mention at a cocktail party when the whining about medical nuisances began. Still, they kept me sidelined for periods of time. Hemorrhoids are the subject of much humor, aren’t they? Unless you get them. A really good case can transform an active person into a shuffling snail of a slow-motion character who’s afraid to take a deep breath.
This nondenominational church I had started going to met in a rented movie theater, and both sound equipment and folding chairs had to be stuffed away at the end of each service into below-stage storage, or into a box truck waiting outside. I decided to help with this, and frequently did. One Sunday, I wanted to help pack up again, but had my “special” ailment going and could shuffle, but couldn’t lift a thing. It has to do with abdominal pressure. So, what the heck. Stepping aside to a place I could be alone, I prayed about it, asking for healing right now so I could do something constructive for these guys. Pretty naive, huh? But I’d found out about about healings in the Bible, and encouragements to pray about needs, so what the heck. I made my request. Bang. problem gone. Done in a few seconds – frankly to my astonishment – and after a tentative cough and test lift to see if I was deluding myself, I happily went to work. Wow. Is this how it works? Ask, and you shall receive?
There were two things I didn’t do. I didn’t tell anyone – for obvious reasons. Would you? And, I didn’t suspect that I was playing mind games with myself. I can tell ya, you can’t buffalo yourself past the inflamed swelling and, shall we say, extreme and raw sensitivity in that delicate area. Am I right? With some things, you either have a problem, or you don’t, and you know which is which. You can think all the happy thoughts you want, but when the time comes to lift 30 pounds, sit down or walk, you’ll call your own bluff long before that. This was the real thing.
In retrospect now, this wasn’t a once-for-all-time thing. But most later onsets were comparatively mild from that time on, and that has been much appreciated by me. Now that my lifestyle has finally chopped long-term stress off at the knees, it’s all history. I’m thankful for the elimination of the basic causes.
So, to the question of, “How did you first discover that God listened to your prayer about inviting Christ into your life?”, I haven’t given it much press. Until now. Let it be our little secret, eh? It’s too embarrassing.