No where in the Bible have we been given a memo that the miracles of Jesus are over. How sad for some who have limited exposure to the miracles of Jesus, not just the ones He did in scripture but the ones He is STILL DOING TODAY.
There was a woman I'll call "Mrs. K" who along with her husband and two children, attended Celebration for a while. For the record, I deeply love the "K" family.
Mr. and Mrs. K. are both strong pentecostal believers and in fact have been for most of their lives. However, their children's best friends from school go to another church and are very active in this other church's youth group. A while back, Mr. and Mrs. K felt it best, because their kids were begging to be with their best friends, to make a change to this other church. Their rationale was that although this church did not subscribe to the same beliefs they espouse, it was worth the change if their kids were happy. (Can I just say...since when did God command us to keep our kids happy? Sometimes our kids aren't going to be thrilled with us if we're effectively parenting.)
Mr. and Mrs. K's decision was not a knock on our youth group, in fact they thought we had a great youth group. If their kids met our kids FIRST, things would have been different. But they didn't. They already had very strong established relationships with the kids in their school who were already a part of this other church. And they thought, "if the kids are happy and really involved there they will grow spiritually." They were also afraid of their kids rebelling or resenting them for not giving them major input into this church decision. In reality, the kids made the decision. The K's thought that in the long run, the few doctrinal differences were not really that big a deal. After all, we're all in the same body of Christ, serving the same Lord. This other church preaches salvation, in fact they are major soul winners, (this is not some small obscure church in fact it's a part of one of the largest denominations in America, known for their evangelistic outreach) so that was really all that mattered. I do appreciate them for how they are reaching the lost.
Back to the K's. We were disappointed, of course, because we really love the "K" family.
We heard nothing from them for about a year and then about six months ago we got a shocking phone call. Mrs. K was diagnosed with cancer and was given just a few months to live. Doctors said it was inoperable and gave no hope for a cure or remission. They called my husband and I because... [drumroll please] their church does not believe in divine healing.
Yes, I'm serious.
Their church didn't pray for her divine healing because they don't believe in it. They believe it is not always God's will, and is not necessarily made possible by Christ's sacrifice on the cross, etc. They pray for people to be comforted through their sickness. They pray that they be at peace when dying. But, they do not believe in supernatural divine healing for all as we do. So much for doctrine not being all that important.
So although the "K" kids are just happy as larks in this youth group they go to, they had no one to call upon in their church when Mrs. K was on death's door, unless of course it's just to pray that she passes over peacefully. And quite truthfully they know there's more available than that.
The day the "K" family received the tragic news about Mrs. K's cancer, they called Larry and I. They said they needed to talk to someone that they knew would get ahold of God for their need. They asked us to ask Celebration Church to touch God on their behalf. Of course we agreed and our hearts went out to them with compassion. For that matter, we take all requests that come to us very seriously and consider it an honor to be a part of making history through prayer. We believe Jesus heals today. Our understanding of scripture is that salvation and healing were joined together upon the cross of Calvary and just as we trust Jesus to save us we also trust Him to heal us. And we've seen that happen countless times.
This time was no exception. It's been six months and guess what -- Mrs. K's "inoperable, terminal cancer" is no more! There's been a miraculous turnaround!! Doctors can't explain it and don't understand it, but she's getting her health back!!!!!!!!!!!!! PRAISE JESUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
It was/is a privilege to continue to stand with her in prayer. We'll continue to do so. When we talk to Mr. and Mrs. K. they seem to indicate that "one day when the kids are grown" they'll be back at Celebration. They're certainly welcome anytime.
I have a few thoughts on this as you can imagine but some at the forefront of my mind are...
Who does the Bible say should lead a home...parents, or kids?
What does it communicate to kids when their parents go to a church where they can't ask them to believe with them for their Mom's healing?
Should core beliefs ever be put aside for the sake of relationships?
These are just some thoughts I have.
And finally, please join us in lifting up Mrs. K. for continued divine health and wellness. I'm so glad we serve a miracle working God. His miracles certainly DID NOT end with the days of the Bible. An unchurched friend of mine recently asked me, "Deanna, are there two Jesus's?" I said, "No. Where would you hear that or why would you possibly believe it?" And they said, "Well, it's just that what you believe and what your Jesus has the ability to do is so different from what another of my Christian friends says their Jesus is able to do or is still doing in the world today." No, I'm not kidding. That was a real conversation!!! Seriously!!!
We are serving the SAME JESUS who healed the lame and caused the blind to see. He saves, AND does SO MUCH MORE!!!! Oh that the world may see that. He is not just our Savior, He is also our deliverer, healer, baptizer, and much more. May we never try to "dumb our Jesus down" to some weak lethargic God who stopped doing stuff, for ANY reason including our family or friends. Let's proclaim His greatness and teach our children that His power is available for any need we may have!