The Five Miracles Of Healing
“Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?” John 11:40
One of the paradox of life is that we need to face death before we can truly live a meaningful life that is filled with love, joy and peace. This is the precious lesson that the dying has taught me through the hospice ministry. Hospice care is NOT about having a peaceful death but living the abundant life in the face of pain, suffering and death. For Christians, it is a time to know Christ and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in His suffering.1
Caring for the sick and terminally ill has provided me with countless experiences of the miracles of healing. Albert Einstein was absolutely right that there are only two ways to live our lives – one as though nothing is a miracle and the other as though everything is a miracle. To live a life full of miracles we are to bring heaven to earth. As Elizabeth Barrett Browning reminds us in her beautiful poem:
“Earth’s crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God;
But only he who sees, takes off his shoes,
The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries,
And daub their natural faces unaware
More and more from the first similitude.2
Miracles of healing are more than being cured from a physical illness. Dr. J.C. McPheeters described five miracles of healing from his ministry of prayer and healing. Firstly, there is the miracle of instant cure which attracts much attention but does not necessarily lead one to a closer relationship with God. Many years ago, a young boy had pushed a small bead up his nose. His mother brought him to see me to have it removed. I was not able to do so and his mother prayed fervently as I was writing a letter of referral to the hospital. To my utter surprise, the bead dropped out just as I finished writing the letter! Miracles of healing are real and the power to perform miracles is a gift of the Holy Spirit.3
Secondly, there is the miracle of the natural healing processes of our bodies. We are fearfully and wonderfully made and God has created our bodies in such a way that the body to repair and restore damaged tissues and organs. We need to see symptoms such as fever, cough, and diarrhoea are the body’s defence mechanisms rather than symptoms that need to be medicated. Recently, I saw a 100 year old lady whose foot healed very nicely after her gangrenous toes were auto amputated by her body.
Thirdly, there is the miracle of God’s guidance to a remedy. King Hezekiah was sick and dying when he prayed for healing. The prophet Isaiah was then led to advise the king to make a poultice of figs to cure his boil.4 Patients suffering from chronic, incurable and life limiting diseases are often bombarded with advice for all kinds of treatment. Patients with cancer have to decide on chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgery. At the same time, relatives and well meaning friends would also recommend alternative treatments such as herbs, vitamins, acupuncture, etc. In the midst of such confusion, we need to pray for the miracle of God’s guidance to a remedy.
Fourthly, there is the miracle of the sufficiency of God’s grace. This is a miracle that I have seen over and over again in patients who struggle against all odds to add life to their years and to overcome their disabilities, pain and suffering. In God’s hands, suffering is never wasted as we see God’s power perfected in our weaknesses.5
Fifthly, there is the miracle of the triumphant crossing – when we face death with the blessed assurance that we are going home to our “mansion in glory.” The dying have been my teachers to live with the mindset of “death to life” rather than from “life to death.” When my 91 year old aunt was dying, she kept reminding us that she is going to a better place and was looking forwards to her death.
It is the fear and denial of death that keeps us from experiencing the miracles of healing. We tend to focus on physical cures rather than on the spiritual healing of our souls. The good news is that we can have a foretaste of heaven that is awaiting for us in the future. To do so, we need to turn to God each day and change the way we think, feel and act so that our lives will be transformed as the Holy Spirit takes control of more and more of our lives. For the biggest miracle is our transformation from sinners into saints.
- Philippians 3:10-11
- “Aurora Leigh” by Elizabeth Barrett Browning
- 1 Cor 12:10,27.29
- 2 Kings 20:1-7
- 2 Corinthians 12:1-10