I’m doing the Good Morning Girls Spring Bible Study, Living and Leading Like Jesus, and recently the reading was Luke 13:10-17. What jumped out at me was that this woman had been so very ill– bent over and unable to even straighten up– for 18 years. EIGHTEEN YEARS!
A woman there had an evil spirit that had kept her sick for eighteen years; she was bent over and could not straighten up at all. Luke 13:11
Then the following Sunday at church the pastor mentioned the healing of the Gadarene demoniac —
This man had an evil spirit in him and lived among the tombs. Nobody could keep him tied with chains any more; many times his feet and his hands had been tied, but every time he broke the chains and smashed the irons on his feet. He was too strong for anyone to control him. Day and night he wandered among the tombs and through the hills, screaming and cutting himself with stones. Mark 5:2-5
— and the woman with the 12-year issue of blood.
There was a woman who had suffered terribly from severe bleeding for twelve years, even though she had been treated by many doctors. She had spent all her money, but instead of getting better she got worse all the time.
Do you see a pattern? All 3 of these people had a serious problem for a very long time. Sometimes, for reasons perhaps known only to Him, God waits to heal us or answer our prayers. But look how He answered them when it was time!
When Jesus saw her, he called out to her, “Woman, you are free from your sickness!” He placed his hands on her, and at once she straightened herself up and praised God. Luke 13:12-13
… Jesus was saying, “Evil spirit, come out of this man!” … they saw the man who used to have the mob of demons in him. He was sitting there, clothed and in his right mind… So the man left and went all through the Ten Towns, telling what Jesus had done for him. And all who heard it were amazed. Mark 5:8, 15, 20
But Jesus kept looking around to see who had [touched His clothes]. The woman realized what had happened to her, so she came, trembling with fear, knelt at his feet, and told him the whole truth. Jesus said to her, “My daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace, and be healed of your trouble.” (Matthew 9:22 says “…At that very moment the woman became well.”)
What I learned from these passages–
1. God answers our prayers when and how He sees fit.
2. When He chooses to heal, it’s complete, or at least it was in these particular instances. There was no therapy needed for the bent woman to stand up straight; no counseling for the demoniac; no transfusions for the bleeding woman. Christ’s power was enough.
3. After each healing, they WENT. Praising God, telling what Jesus did, and in peace. It looks to me like Jesus healed people so they could testify to others about God’s greatness and power.
I wish I could say that I’ve been a faithful prayer warrior for years, but even though I have had situations I’ve prayed for over many years, (I’ve seen some answers and I’m still waiting on some others.) I have been erratic. Not a warrior. Maybe a weekend warrior, or a Cub Scout. Thankfully, God’s work depends on His grace and knowledge of our hearts more than our actions!
Are you waiting on God?