One thing that I love about being Christian is the hope that I find even in the toughest situations. Equally, I love the hope that I can provide people through the power of the gospel. The Holy Spirit has an amazing way of invading our lives in the most perfect moment and give us that extra little bit of encouragement.
On the other hand, one thing that frustrates me about Christianity is that sometimes we use that hope to make absolutes in the lives of ourselves or other individuals. I am certainly guilty of doing just that. The absolutes that I am referring to are when people come to you when you are struggling with health issues, or other things, and tell you that God has promised that this is gone and that you just have to believe in His power and you will be healed. It’s as if a fairy godmother has come and waved her magic wand and “POOF” you’re all better.
Don’t get me wrong. God certainly can and does heal people in the blink of an eye (or sometimes faster.) But that doesn’t necessarily mean that He is going to heal someone that fast every single time just because you say He will.
Yes, I believe firmly in the power of the words written in Matthew 21:2, “If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.” I believe that If we ask fervently and with consistent prayer, God will give us the desires of our heart. I believe that this can pertain to sickness and health as well.
However, I also believe in the words written in Isaiah 55:9, “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts” God is unlike any other in that He is omniscient. I believe that He knows exactly how a situation is going to work out way before it comes into motion. I believe that even though we don’t understand why we have to go through certain things, “He is working all things together for the good of those who love Him.” Romans 8:28.
Even if we are the biggest prayer warrior this world has ever seen, and we believe in the power of the living God and we believe, with all we are, that He is going to come in and redeem us. That plan that we have in our head, is not necessarily God’s plan or His timing. Or maybe it is His plan, but right now, He needs to teach us something in our moment of hurting. We have to realize that we can’t pray ourselves or others out of our distress at all times.
When God tells us that, “Whatever we ask, He will give,” that doesn’t mean that He will give us everything that OUR heart desires, but everything that HIS heart desires. I fully believe that when we are seeking after God’s heart, and we are seeking to grow closer and closer to Him, He will transform our hearts and desires to match His. I believe that He will tell us exactly what He wants for us, in His timing. I believe that God does want to give us our desires, but those desires are the ones that He has planned for us all along.
So if you come to me and tell me that I am healed, or that I just need to accept that God has healed me and believe harder, I will politely smile and say, “Thank you for your prayers.” But please know that is submitting to the true will of God. If He desires for me to be in a season of pain and hardship to teach me something, then I will certainly remain in that season, all the while asking God to hurry up with His lesson and make my mind open to learn it.