James 5:14-15 – Are any among you sick? They should call for the elders of the church and have them pray over them, anointing them with oil in the name of the Lord. The prayer of faith will save the sick and the Lord will raise them up.
Warren's face was aglow as he entered our home recently for a visit. He was barely seated when he burst out with this story. It had happened on the previous Sunday morning in one of our local churches where he is an elder. Toward the end of the service the minister called all the elders to join her at the front of the sanctuary. At the same moment, Scott, a four year old boy was brought from his Sunday School class and was placed in the midst of the assembled elders. The next move was to have everyone else in the congregation join hands including the elders. With one hand each elder was holding the hand of a member of the congregation while the other was gently touching Scott. In the hushed wonder of those moments the minister offered a prayer for God's help and blessing for the very critical heart operation Scott was to have the next morning. In very truth the directions of James 5:14-15 were being followed precisely.
We do not yet know the full results of the operation but the initial report was very positive. We do know, however, that the effect on the congregation was fantastic. Happy smiles were everywhere. A few days after the service two more of those who shared the experience were still bubbling over with joy and they were still very keen to tell me the story yet once more. A new excitement aglow with faith, hope and love has descended upon that congregation for which we can truly say, "Thanks be to God."
Prayer: O living God, we praise and thank you for the wonder of your ways and for the transforming power of your presence. We add our prayers for Scott and for your continued blessing on his congregation as well as on all your people everywhere. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.