The thought that God is punishing us when we’re suffering is common, especially amongst those who don’t know God very well. It’s understandable when we read of God punishing sin so severely, even visiting people’s sins to the third and fourth generations!
Are you asking yourself this same question?
When I was a child, I just loved the story of Jonah and the Whale. The excitement and thrill that God would send a large fish to swallow someone whole.
As an adult, I see that the whale was saving Jonah and not a punishment for disobedience. In the mind of a child, being in a whale’s tummy was the worst thing that could ever happen! Surely this was punishment?
Are you familiar with the verse ‘No one living in Zion will say, “I am ill” Is 33:24. What a challenging scripture for those children of God who are living with pain and suffering.
What about when you are ill?
I had people in my life for years telling me I was already healed. It was so hurtful at the time, as though they were devaluing my situation.
Eventually, I began to mentally understand the Truth that as a born-again believer I am already healed. See IS IT ALWAYS GOD’S WILL TO HEAL.
Is there such a thing as demonic influence or spiritual causes for disease? and is this the reason you’re ill today?
According to the Gospels, demons are everywhere! Jesus delivered people from demonic influence all the time and often the demons did cause sickness and disease.
When I developed illness all those years ago, deliverance ministry was strong amongst Christian healing ministries around the globe.
My relationship with God was weak and consequently I believed this teaching, that there were spiritual causes for the disease I was living with. I was desperate for healing and willing to believe anything.
Today I wanted to share a few thoughts on the healing of Jairus’ Daughter.
One of the favourite things about this story is that is shows that God is indiscriminate when it comes to healing.
Whether you’re a well known church leader that 1000s of people follow in instagram, or someone who is an outcast like the woman with the issue of blood, God will meet you and minister his healing.
If you know the heart of Jesus, you will know how keen he is for us to be well and how it’s just not his nature to ignore us. So how do you explain the story of Jesus and the Canaanite woman whom he disregarded?
The story always baffled me as it appears to contradict the willingness and generosity of our beautiful Saviour.
Close inspection reveals that Jesus wasn’t ignoring the Canaanite woman. He was setting her up for her breakthrough.
I love this as it simply shows how we can approach Jesus when we too are believing him for a miracle.
When I was very unwell, I remember going through every sin in the book, repenting and asking for forgiveness for any sin I could think of. The revelation that I was the seed of Abraham helped me massively in understanding the relationship between sin and disease.
I even repented for things I hadn’t done, just in case to ensure I was completely covered. You see I thought sin was stopping God from healing me.
Are you the same? Have you repented again and again, thinking that somehow sin is stopping God from blessing you?
The character of Ruth proves that unfair circumstances don’t need to disadvantage you on your healing journey.
I’m sure you’re familiar with the story of the tortoise and the hare? The tortoise puts one foot in front of the other and does his best. He doesn’t complain about the unfairness of the race or compare himself to his competitor.
He is so unlikely to win against a hare yet his character and attitude win him the race.
The most unqualified becomes the winner.
Do you ever feel at a disadvantage due to your disability or health condition? Maybe you’re questioning God’s plan, especially if you’ve been ill for many years.
Many years ago, when my body was so riddled with pain that even getting dressed or showered seemed to take all day (and on some days, not at all). I was in a constant place of defeat and lack because I didn’t understand how to receive God’s grace.
The Bible tells us to choose life, I didn’t know how to; the horror of my situation seemed greater than the power of grace.
Are you the same? Are you so overcome by the symptoms in your body, you’re in a constant state of struggle?
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.
Are you struggling to believe for the impossible because you’ve been ill for many many years? The story of admiral Jim Stockdale will help you to expect miracles 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.