Grace For Healing
God wants you well
head not the tail

When you think of your healing journey, are you as the Bible puts it, the head and not the tail? Or have your negative coping strategies conditioned you to a place of the underdog?

In other words, are your survival skills running the show? 

My survival strategies involved depending on other people to do things for me like the housework or the supermarket shopping and I would often lash out at my poor old mum.

I always felt better afterwards as I’d released a whole load of anger.

I wanted to talk about my situation all the time; the comfort from others helped me survive. I thought about suicide constantly, this caused me to feel calmer as it was my way out of the hell I was in. 
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negative attention

Isn’t it frustrating when you’re so very ill, yet people think it’s quite minor because you look so well and healthy? But the more negative attention you receive for having symptoms, the harder it will be to heal.

I’ve had experience of this. I remember once being in a church service where the minister invited the congregation to lay hands on the sick. No-one wanted to lay hands on me. Why? Because there was an elderly man with cancer in the room.

The church judged that this was worse.

I remember being so devastated. I’d lost 10 years of my life by this point, the man with cancer had only been ill for a few weeks.

Have you encountered this? Do you feel those around you devalue your hidden illness?

I now realise however, that recognition for suffering is not a good thing. It’s what we call negative attention.
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healing at the pool of bethesda

The healing at the pool of bethesda teaches us how to position our hearts for a miracle healing.

This poor man had suffered for 38 years which caused him to spiral down into self-pity. His eyes were on the severity of his situation. He was closed to any forward thinking. In all honesty, I think I’d be exactly the same.

Can you identify with this?

When I was unwell,  I thought it was so unfair that my friends could experience marriage, holidays or careers whilst I could barely function.

All I could see was all the things that had been taken away from me. The loss and grief consumed me so much, I ended up crossing over the line into pity.
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meaning of Bethesda

The meaning of Bethesda is House of Mercy.

I believe the Holy Spirt is telling us though the story of the lame man healed at the pool of Bethesda, that if we want a healing, we find it in the house of God, the Church.

The environment you’re in could determine whether or not you receive your miracle. I ended a friendship once, because whenever I was with this person, I felt terrible about myself, as though my best wasn’t good enough.

This was not a healthy environment for me to thrive in.

It seemed to take me weeks to recover from her words. We have neuroceptors in our nervous system which constantly scan our environments for safety or danger. If we’re in a situation where we’re sensing danger, we will not heal.
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what does faith without works mean?

The movie Soul Surfer tells the true story of 13 year old professional surfer Bethany Hamilton, who lost her arm to a shark bite. 

It looked as though she would never surf again and certainly not be able to partake in professional competitions. Bethany refused to allow her situation hinder her.

She pushed pass the stares and the disbelief of others when she relearnt to surf with just one arm. Bethany kept on training, believing she was well able to win professional competitions once again.

She continued moving forwards towards her goal. What an amazing and inspirational woman of God.
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expect a miracle

Are you struggling to expect a miracle healing because you’ve been ill for many many years? I believe the story of admiral Jim Stockdale will help you to believe for the impossible in the midst of long term suffering.

Jim Collins’ book ‘Good to Great’ tells of something called the Stockdale paradox. 

Admiral Jim Stockdale was in the US Navy during the Vietnam War. He was shot down and held captive for 8 years in the Hanoi Hilton, the infamous POW prison where he was tortured over 20 times. 

In a public interview after his release he was asked why he survived and others didn’t. 
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sacrifice of praise

The leper in who approached Jesus in Matt 8, fell on his knees and chose to worship Jesus, he knew the benefits of praise. 

When Jesus came down from the mountainside, large crowds followed him. A man with leprosy came and knelt before him and said, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean. Matt 8:1-2

 Despite the extremeness of his suffering, he still humbled himself and praised God. Wow! That’s powerful!
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feeling unworthy of god's love

I once knew a women who had a long term cancer. She’d had it for several decades. Often I would think “If God hasn’t healed her, what chance do I have?” I didn’t realise at the time but I was feeling unworthy of God’s love and his desire to heal me.

I had a false belief system that healing and spiritual maturity were linked. She had a very close walk with the Lord, proficient in numerous spiritual gifts. I couldn’t understand why she wasn’t healed.

Unconsciously I was feeling too unworthy of God’s love to approach Him.

Do you think you’re not good enough to receive a healing? Maybe you too think your relationship with God needs to be at a certain level? This is exactly what I thought. 
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healing touch of jesus

Are you a huggy touchy-feely Christian? Or do you prefer your ‘personal space?’ I definitely fall into the latter group.

I remember going to New Year’s Eve parties and conveniently going to the bathroom at midnight to avoid those awkward New Year hugs with everyone.

Therapists and doctors claim that hugs are good for our health. We see the healing touch of Jesus in the way He heals the leper. It is not by accident that Jesus chooses to heal him in this way. 
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Jesus heals the leper

When the doctor says ‘there’s nothing more we can do for you’, the distress and disappointment is heartbreaking. 

I have clients who are in this place, it’s scary, it’s feels soul destroying. I’ve been in this place too. Few things are worse than knowing you’ll be suffering for the rest of your life or that you’re dying.

Is this where you are right now? I pray that this short series of how Jesus cleanses the leper will give you hope and an expectation of how healing is possible.

When Jesus cleanses the leper, He says ‘I am willing’. Thankfully no matter how impossible an illness, the Lord Jesus will never say those words to us. 
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