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Friday, June 18, 2010

Has It Come to That?

There's an old story I first heard from a friend years ago, and I have heard others repeat since. In this story, a family gathers around the bedside of a beloved grandmother, who has undergone major surgery. As the doctors try desperately to save her life, the chief surgeon says to family, "Well, we've done all we can do. We'll just have to wait and see now."

The family asks the doctor, “Is there anything that we can do?”

“Well, you can pray,” the doctor replies.

It so happens that the little old grandmother is still conscious enough to hear what the doctor had said. She moans, “Oh no! Has it come to that?”

I know families who live life like that. They view God as so distant, the thought of asking Him to intervene in human affairs is tantamount to desperation.

What a shame. This understanding is based upon a faulty vision of God. The fact that we have doctors and nurses does not mean God is not in the healing business. Rather, it demonstrates God’s desire to include humanity in His healing work. The field of medicine is not an indication of God’s desire for distance; it is an indication of God’s desire for closeness. God loves people and wants them to partner with Him in His Kingdom work.

Can God heal miraculously apart from the field of medicine? Absolutely, and I believe that sometimes he does. Equally important, God grants people the privilege of healing through the field of medicine.

An understanding like this motivates me to pray more, not less.

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