Are They All Healed When You Pray
by Keith Whitehead
Everyone in the healing ministry experiences failure when praying with others for healing. "Failure" in this connection is simply not seeing the healing happen that you prayed for. "Failure" in prayer is never absolute because God always
recognizes our genuine efforts.
But we can reduce the percentage of failures by giving attention to the possible causes. This article briefly discusses some of the causes and suggests some solutions.
1. Faith The disciples once asked Jesus to increase their faith (Luke 17. 5). His reply may seem somewhat obtuse. He certainly did not respond to them as they expected, telling them what they could do if they had even the tiniest amount of faith.
Is there a lesson for us here? Most certainly! It is, perhaps, twofold. Firstly, we use what faith we have got at the time. An obvious implication since Jesus did not do what they asked. Secondly, we need to improve the quality of the faith we have. Another clear, perhaps even clearer implication of Jesus' response.
How? Not easy to give a short answer. But look at the life of someone like Smith Wigglesworth. (Never heard of him? You really do need to get down to your nearest Christian book shop!). Reading the biographies about create considerable enthusiasm in oneself - at first. Then you might begin to get frustrated after the first four or five. Why? Because none of the writers (can?) tell you how he came to have such great faith. He certainly did not start with it!
In conversation recently a lady pointed to the real reason: "I felt disgusted with myself," she said, "because of the great love he had for the Lord". That is the ultimate key.
2. Time We do not, however, love God in isolation from his people. In his first letter, at 4. 20 John tells us that a person is a liar who says he loves God while hating his brother. Indeed, he says that anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot claim to love God, whom he has never seen.
We need to love those we pray with enough to spend whatever amount of time is necessary to get to the root of their problem and so pray effectively for them. Failure here is an important cause of nonhealing. Yet Jesus has commanded us that: anyone who loves God must also love his brother.
3. Unfocussed Prayer In fact, this follows from the last point. We need to spend time making an adequate assessment of what is wrong with the person only so that we can pray specifically into that situation. This is something my wife and I lay considerable stress on in our book "The Keys To Praying For Healing". Is importance cannot be overlooked.
One can spend considerable time teaching individuals how to pray with other for healing, laying stress on how specific the prayer should be. But so many people, when it comes to actually praying, fall back into something like "Oh Lord, please heal him/her in all the ways he/she needs healing".
Somehow, God is so good that no prayer is a waste of time, but this kind of prayer probably comes very close! Certainly, praying like that will not result in many healings.
Focus your prayer exactly on the problem. If they have cancer, or a damaged vertebrae, or Aids, or a cold, pray exactly into that!
4. Letting God Be God Anyone can pray with another for healing. And anyone can see that healing take place - because God's love for us is so great. However, his knowledge and wisdom are also very great and he sees things differently to us. So we shall not always know why a particular healing does not happen. Sometimes it is down to the factors we are discussing here. Sometimes it is due to similar ones we do not have space to included here.
But sometimes nonhealing is due to something which we shall never know about. We need to do all we can, certainly. But when that has been done, there will always be cases which defy explanation. On the other hand, there will also be cases where God works in such a sovereign way that we are left speechless at the "how" and the "why" of it.
Sometimes, in either of these instances, we just have to let God be God"
5.Gifting Anyone can pray with another for healing. But if we feel called into the healing ministry, we really ought to get ourselves prayed with for a gift of healing.
Just as God can heal without us, so he can empower us without any assistance from anyone else! But unless we know ourselves to have been specifically blessed in this way, we really ought to seek the prayers of others.
What others? Well, any Christian who know what he/she is about. But there does seem to be a definite advantage in being prayed with by someone known to have a gift of healing themselves. Many healers will themselves testify to this. God can give when anyone asks, but...
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