Each time I blog, I try to remember that I am called by God to be an ambassador. Jesus commanded that we go into the world and tell all people the good news. Often the emphasis falls on that we should tell people about Christ, but sometimes, not so much emphasis is put on the part that says the message is GOOD NEWS. The word gospel means good news. Jesus intended that people see the story of his life's work as worthy of being repeated. Fire and brimstone preaching has often been held as a productive means of getting people to an altar. But Jesus seldom preached fire and brimstone. In fact the bulk of his ministry focused on healing people. The greatest need in their physical lives, was healing. And Jesus understood this. But he also paired healing with faith. So much so that in order to be healed, a person must first believe.
I try to keep in mind that what Jesus portrayed is what he wants me to portray. I found my inspiration today in two verses in Proverbs.
There is one who speaks like the piercings of a sword, but the tongue of the wise promotes health. Prov 12:17 -18
But a faithful ambassador brings health. Prov 13:17
When we post, we want you to begin to have faith that what God has in mind is your health and well being. Body, mind, spirit and soul.
It is easy to see the evil in things, and to see our daily battle to the point it overwhelms. I have had so many teachers who continually point to sin and focus on all the ways sin hurts and turns us from God. My mother was this kind of person. God bless her, she always portrayed a God who punished our sins. She really never experienced the freedom of his grace. It is true that sin turns us from the path of God's best. But we can complain about sin forever, and sin won't go away until we aren't looking so hard at sin, that we forget the remedy for sin. I believe that God wants us to focus away from the devastation of sin on our lives and focus toward our hope. That hope is that Jesus really is able to bring us out of the grips of sin and all of its evilness, to really make a difference in our lives. According to our two verses, a wise speaker will promote his listener's health.
Knowing Jesus should bring results into our lives that give someone else hope. I beleive that Jesus healed people because it was an evidence that God is at work. Jesus himself was rebuked for focusing on the healing of his believers.
For which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Arise and walk’ Matthew 9:5
Matthew, Mark and Luke all give versions of this verse. Its truth impacted all three men, so much, they all remembered nearly identical versions. The point is that if Jesus is who he said he was, his power on our lives is sufficient for all things that promote abundant life. He wasn't being selective toward our sin. "Oh, I only came because you are such sinners...." NOT THE CHRIST I KNOW.
Health should be as real as our salvation. So why isn't it? I believe it is at least in part becasue we focus more on sin. And also because we fail to live by our faith, first. One real fear I have about our giving you guidance for health, is that we neglect to link it to faith properly. Or that your perception of our instruction becomes an "if you do this, than God will give you health." Jesus did not tell people to go eat right to be healed. He said, "be healed by your faith." Then he made sure they had food before they left him. I guess what I am saying is, that in order to be in line with Jesus, we must make sure you understand the order in which Jesus placed these truths. Healing was a gift based on faith. Not something we work for. But Jesus never wanted us to throw those gifts to the wind.
Example: A person is healed of a lung cancer that was most likely caused by smoking. But immediately return to smoking. Do they expect that the gift of healing is also a miracle of making the effects of smoking null and void?
I presently know someone who has been gifted a new heart. She has never been a healthy eater. Her doctors remind her that she is disrespecting that gift, and thier efforts to save her life, if she will not change her eating habits. First the gift by faith, then respect of the gift by honoring it to good health.
Healing is totally of God. Anyone who has fought cancer and lost, knows that everything they can do cannot fend off the power of a disease sometimes. God must intervene for healing to occur. Faith and healing are linked. But we honor the gift by seeking his best, and letting him use our wise choices to bring the abundance of that gift to its fullness. Muscles respond to exercise (Week 17: Get Moving). Its a fact. But exercise doesn't bring healing, God does. It is because we choose to be faithful in the things which echo God's plan for our bodies to live well, that God is able to bless our health. It is a pairing of faith with action. God will bless the action that we perform in faith.
It is the Good News, that Jesus desires you see evidence of his work in your life. that it brings change, and a tendency toward a better life. Our desire is that you move everyday toward a goal of wholeness, that your faith is strengthened, your hope is realized, that your life is enhanced, and the abundance of God's mercy flows into your life unimpeded. Blessings to all who make wise choices based on having sought to know God's design.
We honor you God. We seek your blessing on our efforts to live in faith.In Jesus's Name, AMEN