Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Sweet Hour Of Prayer"1 (Lyrics)
Job 22:5 – No, it's because of your wickedness! There's no limit to your sins. (NLT)
"Have you anointed her and prayed for her healing?" my friend asked.
My wife suffers with various physical ailments — too many, in fact, for her young age. She has undergone numerous surgeries to remove tumours that could have turned deadly. Then came surgeries to repair hernias, remove a gall bladder, take off plantar warts, and repair carpal tunnel. She still needs to have herniated disks in her back and neck repaired. To top off these issues, she suffers with fibromyalgia, degenerative arthritis, and neuropathy. Every trip to the doctor seems to entail another medicine or a further diagnosis.
Had Michelle lived in Job's time, there would have been any number of good church folks who would be telling her that she had sinned. Though a righteous man — declared so by God and himself — Job was accused by several fair-weather friends of having sinned against God. Why else would he be afflicted by boils and have lost most of his family and possessions? Even his wife told him to curse God so that he could die and get his miserable life over with.
Job maintained his innocence, and at the end of the story, God corroborated his testimony. Sickness is the bane of living in a world tainted by sin. The world that God originally created was free from sickness — and all of the other results of sin — and the new world that He will create at the end of time will also be free of sickness and disease.
While sickness came when sin entered the world, all sickness is not the result of individual sins. If this were true, my wife would be one of the greatest sinners in the world — when in fact, she is quite saintly. God can and does use sickness as a means of discipling or punishing those who revel in wilful sin, but having a cold doesn't necessarily mean that I've committed a particular sin.
When my pastor friend asked if I had anointed and prayed for my wife, my answer was yes. But she hasn't been healed. Just as sickness is not always the result of sin, so God doesn't always choose to heal our sicknesses when we ask. He is sovereign. We must trust His plan.
If we're sick, let's examine our spiritual life. If it's in order, then we'll pray for healing, but leave the results to an all-wise God.
Prayer: Father, we entrust our health-related matters to You. If sin is the cause, convict us. If it's not, then give us courage to trust You and endure. Amen.