Just finished writing the report for the second of three assigned books for GSSM’s Summer Intensive which starts Monday. To say I’m excited about this course is an understatement, although my excitement was tampered recently when I spoke about it with someone who was “burned” some years back with regard to healing ministry. That’s more prevalent than I’d care to admit, but the fact remains that God can and does still use His people to bring His Kingdom to earth. “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven” has taken on new meaning since I realized that there is no sickness in heaven! Okay, so, one more book to read :)
Doing Healing by Alexander Venter
In the preface of this book, Alexander Venter states, “This book is written for those who need healing; for those who want to understand the biblical approach to healing and, more importantly, for those who practise—or want to learn how to practise—a ministry of healing.” Yep, this one’s for me too! As with the first book, I found my “worldview conditioning” challenged as it made me aware of the lens through which I viewed divine healing. It wasn’t so much what I knew but what I thought I knew that obstructed my vision. I praise God that I don’t need to remain in powerless Christianity!
The chapters that had the greatest impact on me were the ones on Modeling and also on Discernment. I have a habit of underlining thoughts and passages that jump out at me. I honestly don’t know that I have ever marked up a book so much as this one! At times I felt as if my head and heart were going to explode because it was almost too much at once :) I don’t pretend to have retained it all, but what a resource and source of inspiration it has become.
It is also quite challenging. If Jesus’ credibility “depended on him doing his Father’s works” then likewise “our credibility is tied up in our doing the ‘works of Jesus’—and even greater works.” I am at the same time full of faith for this and yet cognizant of my own inadequate knowledge, propensity for pride, and emotions that need to grow up and become “cooperative servants of God”!
It is my desire to learn to walk as Jesus did, practicing God’s presence in a moment-by-moment consciousness of Him, abiding with Him, hearing His voice, and operating through Him, discerning where faith lies and how to release it, receiving and activating spiritual gifts, causing people to reach out and receive healing. I believe God intends for His children to live as Jesus did, not for the sake of being “spiritual, fulfilled or happy” but for God’s glory and for the world’s salvation, in full dependence on the Spirit. “To the extent that we are under God’s authority, yielded in service to his will, we are given and exercise that authority in real terms.”
I have a new perspective on healing now, but a “change in perspective means a change in practice, or it is no change at all.” I must learn how to “befriend the Parakletos.” My worship and prayer life need to be transformed (a new prayer language would be great! :) I long for an encounter and have for years. Yet, “If we do not believe, and we do not expect encounter, it mostly does not happen.” To date it hasn’t happened. But I am patient, and God, who is the author and finisher of my faith, is the author and finisher of my healing as well. And He is good!