There are seasons for all of us where we are not able to do all we want. When chronic illness enters the picture, these seasons can be long indeed. It can be especially difficult when we are unable to serve or help our local community.
For those of us who are part of a church, a neighbourhood, a sports club or a community group we know what it is to volunteer our time and energy. It is a worthwhile and often enjoyable experience.
It can be challenging and even draining, but there’s something about working as part of a team toiling towards a common goal that can be very uplifting.
The Bible has some pretty in-your-face things to say about prayer and healing. Jesus, as He walked on this earth prayed some big prayers.
But where do these truths fit in my life when my loved ones are not healed however much I pray?
Prayer, Healing and Chronic Illness (Part 2)
I’m continuing my mission to make the resources on this website easier to find – so here is my second ’round up’ of prayer related posts. The first post included the articles:
As I watch people in my life suffer yet cling to the knowledge that I serve a good God, I have struggled with the Bible’s teachings on prayer. I used to read the verses which seemed to promise immediate physical healing with great cynicism.
At last I decided it was time for me to look into them properly, and I was somewhat surprised at what I discovered when I left my pride and preconceived ideas at the door.
It’s all very well for me to know that I OUGHT to pray – but how do I really go about praying for someone with an ‘incurable’ disease? I decided to look at the sort of prayers Jesus prayed – and also whether or not they were answered..
// What sort of struggles have you had with the idea of prayer? I’d love to hear about them!
Prayer. Healing. Chronic Illness.
These are tricky topics, and ones I’ve struggled with quite a bit. In these two posts you will find my thoughts… and why prayer has often seemed like a simple ‘wish’ when really it’s more like a magic wand.
If a wizard doesn’t have a wand, we begin to doubt whether he truly is a wizard. If he has one, and doesn’t use it… well that’s just silly! … Often my prayers for my Mum’s healing seem repetitive.
They exhaust me.
I don’t feel like dragging sickness into my prayer life… read more.
Christmas is coming up, and I want to thank you for following my blog. When you sign up you’ll receive 3 downloadable and printable cards suitable for someone with a chronic illness – and anyone in need of some love!
When I sit down to pray for my sick loved one, I want to pray for healing.
And yet I know that immediate physical healing is not always in God’s plan. Are there other specific things I should be praying about then?
Or ought I simply add a disclaimer, like “may your Will be done”?
So what do we do (as Christians and/or as Watchers) with the parts of the Bible that promise immediate healing?
Why do passages in the Bible promise healing but not deliver?
First disclaimer: I’m not a trained theologian.
Second disclaimer: context is important, but for the sake of a read-able blog post I haven’t included the surrounding chapters of each of these verses.
Third disclaimer (this is the most important!): I can’t promise a miracle. But I can offer you company as you look through theses verses and puzzle over them. I can offer you my thoughts, and a chance to put aside your assumptions and your aching heart to read these passages anew.
Why should we pray for healing if our Loved One’s illness is chronic?
Prayer is not a choice
If a wizard doesn’t have a wand, we begin to doubt whether he truly is a wizard.
If he has one, and doesn’t use it… well that’s just silly!
Likewise, the Bible says if we are Christians, prayer for healing is not just an optional extra if we feel in the right mood (Ephesians 6:18; James 5:13). It’s part of who we are.
We want healing, plain and simple. And if we’re not asking God for it, I suspect it means we’re asking someone else.
Perhaps we have pinned our hopes on doctors and treatments (the gifts rather than the Giver) or simply ‘fate’ (what will be will be).
If the former, we’ve created idols; if the latter, we’ve lost sight of God’s bigness and sovereignty.
Prayer can sometimes feel like something of little consequence. A few muttered words, clenched fists, perhaps closed eyes. Yet I think, as Watchers, praying for healing is a unique way we can live out our faith.
It is faith in action and glorifies God as trustworthy and powerful.