How is Watching going for you? Are you in a season of relative peace or does it feel like troubles are knocking at your door and crowding out your view of Jesus?
Whichever it is, (and maybe it’s both!) I’ve been doing a bit of thinking lately about the most important reminders for our Watching journey. The theme of Called to Watch this year is Watching for the Long Haul, and so far we’ve reflected on:
Practicing Self-Compassion as Watchers
The Importance of Stopping to Heal
Learning to Lament
But if there were two things I could always have at the forefront of my mind as I Watch, two things which would make a real difference to the way I Watch and equip me for the long haul, it would be these:
Continue reading “If all else fails, remember two things”
Do you ever get discouraged because you can’t seem to do anything right? You can’t cheer up your Loved One, you can’t heal them, you can’t even be a ‘good’ Watcher?
You read blog posts and Bible passages about loving selflessly and encouraging others and being joyful – and you try, you really do, but you never quite succeed.
Everyone around you seems to be able to hold their life together and love others as well – and you lose your temper daily, are often discouraged, and sometimes wonder why you’re even here at all.
Continue reading “Why you shouldn’t be like Jesus (Watchers, we are not Saviours)”
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:
Prayer + Chronic Illness = ? (or why we need to make up our minds about prayer)
Why you should pray for healing in Chronic Illness (and 3 reasons why it is so hard)
Prayer and Chronic Illness (Part 2):
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!
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We can talk on and on about how we ought to respond to our chronically sick Loved Ones.
We can outline what the Right Thing to do is, or make lists of What Not To Do.
But in the end, if we claim Jesus as our Saviour and role model, the only thing that really matters is how He responded.
Like father, like son.
Like Saviour, like saved.
Being a Christian is copying Jesus.
But Jesus is impossible to copy!
When we think about Jesus’ response to the sick, we think immediately of his miraculous healings – and then we give up.
In case you haven’t realised … we can’t heal.
Of course we can implement medicine or relief strategies, but we can’t wave our hands and miraculously banish sickness.
Continue reading “Sickness and Jesus’ response”
“Jesus knows what you’re going through.”
The Bible tells us that Jesus as a High Priest can sympathise with all of our sufferings. That He knows what it is to be human.
I have often rebelled against that.
Was Mary sick with an incurable disease? Was Joseph? Did one of Jesus’ brothers or sisters suffer from epilepsy or depression or MS?
If not, then how can He possibly know what it’s like to be a Watcher?
How can He possibly sympathise with me?
Continue reading “Can Jesus really sympathise?”
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”?
I’ve written about prayer in Why we need to make up our minds about prayer and Why we should pray for healing from chronic illness.
I’ve asked whether the Bible promises to answer prayer in Why praying for healing is tricky.
Now it’s time to answer the question: what should we pray?
To answer this, I think it’s helpful to look at how Jesus prayed.
- Jesus prayed contradictory prayers
- Jesus prayed huge prayers
- I have prayed prayers that were not answered and others that were (God healed my sister but not my mum)
- This is why I keep praying
Continue reading “Jesus prayed, I prayed, and neither of us were answered: how to pray for healing”
Some things in life are opposites. They can’t coexist because they cancel each other out. Fire & Water. Tiny & Huge.
Sometimes I am tempted to add ‘Sickness & Christianity’ to this list.
Some people will state it blatantly: there can’t be a god, because if there was, there wouldn’t be suffering.
Ie. If God existed, sickness would not.
Others may not state it that way, but they will believe it just the same. The topic makes them uncomfortable, and they don’t want to talk about it.
They’re afraid to look into it too deeply, because they know sickness is a reality, and they want God to be a reality too, to make them feel better about life. They want to keep their crutch.
Christians, of course, believe in Christianity. They stake their lives on it. And yet… they have to believe in sickness as well. They would be fools not to.
We, as Christian Watchers, know only too well that sickness exists – yet we claim God does too.
Continue reading “Sickness and the Bible (references, disappointments and questions)”