We’re living in a world where unless you do something good, you won’t receive a reward: You have to come first in sports in order to win a medal or you need to get good grades at school in order to get into the right college. Some parents have these types of conditions on their children. ‘You have to be good or Santa won’t bring you any toys.’ But can healing be earned? We know that not everyone receives their healing so how does God decide?
One of the most well known New Testament verses is
The Law came from Moses, but Grace and Truth came by Jesus Christ. John 1:4-17
We need to be careful however that we don’t translate the world’s ways into our relationship with God. When we mess up, God doesn’t stop speaking to us as some Christians think. He doesn’t turn his back on us, waiting for us to apologise. That’s the sort of immature behaviour you’d expect from a child. Think of the father in the story of The Prodigal Son. He ran to his son, before his son repented. And so God does with us when we fail. His arms are open wide, wanting us to turn to Him, not away from Him.
The number of people I’ve heard say that they don’t expect God to heal them because they know they don’t deserve it. Or they up the serving in Church thinking that God is more likely to heal because of it. They haven’t understood that healing is part of grace, ‘unearned, undeserved favour’.
If by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace, otherwise works is no more works Rom 11:6
Grace is a gift, all we can do is receive it. If we earned or deserved it, it wouldn’t be grace. If you remember the Pharisees tried to earn from God, their self-righteousness prevented them from receiving.
When the father of the prodigal son gave his son the ring, robe and sandals, the other brother was jealous. He was annoyed that his younger brother was forgiven and resented him being celebrated with the fatted calf.
‘All I have is yours…’
The older son failed to understand that all these things were already his. He thought he had to earn his father’s love and blessings. And so some believers are with God. Healing belongs to you, a gift of God’s grace. It has nothing to do with being deserving. It has nothing to do with earning. It’s God’s unearned, underserved favour. All we need do is receive.
And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work. 2 Cor 9:8
In the Greek, the verse declares that God ‘is continually making all grace abound to us…’ God’s grace is continuous. The Bible talks of ‘grace upon grace upon grace…’. It never grows old and never stops. If you’ve had a bad medical report, God’s grace for healing, endurance and strength, is abounding to you (right now!). We don’t have to wait for it, it’s happening now. God is continually supplying whatever you need during this season. The problem we can sometimes have is expecting the end result instantly.
Think of the man with the withered hand. Jesus didn’t see what everyone else could see. He saw God making all grace abound towards the man. He called it forth.
What do you need from God right now? Ask God to give you the eyes to see the grace that surrounds you. He’s supplying to you right now.
A good prayer to pray each morning is ‘Lord, I receive the abundance of your grace today.’ Then receive it by faith. God’s grace empowers you to do what you could not do in your own strength. This helped me massively when I was unwell. I would pray this prayer first thing in the morning. I would hold out my hands and by faith see God’s grace abounding to me. As I would get out of bed and put my foot on the ground, I would ‘see’ a golden floor. (Remember the yellow brick road?!). As I spent the rest of the day walking on the golden road, I knew I would have everything I needed.
During your season of illness, God is gracing you with joy despite the affliction. He graces you with patience whilst you endure. He graces you with the ability to rise above the storm. He graces you with the ability to maintain a good attitude despite the suffering. God’s grace will cause you to stand out against the other people who are living with illnesses.