Saturday, July 26, 2008

I Gotta Have Faith

We learned early in the week that my Uncle had been losing a lot of blood internally. The doctors didn't know why and he had to get at least a few pints of blood before he was stable enough to get anything tested. When he did get tested, they found that he has a cancerous tumor on his colon. They say that it hasn't spread and is unusually contained in one spot. Monday the doctors are gonna map out a plan of action to deal with situation.

As I was praying this morning, I remembered the woman with the issue of blood in the Bible. She had been an outcast for a lot of her life because of her condition. As Jesus walked through town, though, she knew that if she could just touch the hem of his coat, that there was power enough in that touch to be healed.

She thirsted for his anointing, crawling under people's legs, doing whatever she needed to do to reach him before he left town. Jesus was surrounded by a large crowd of people, but when she touched him, he asked, "Who touched me?" The disciples, the people who were walking him, talking to him, asking him for his supernatural wisdom, probably cut a quick glance to each other. Peter was the only one who had the guts to say, "Hey man, the crowd is pressing against you." Jesus explained that this was more than just a touch, there was power in the touch. She came to his feet, frightened, realizing there was nowhere to go. She fell and, probably with tears in her eyes, told the people the story. Jesus response was simply, "Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering."

None of the physicians or doctors could heal her from her infirmity. She was desperate for that which gave life. It got me to thinking about living in the times that they did. They had no x-rays, EKG, none of it. They wouldn't have known cancer from Adam without opening someone up. So, was it easier or harder for them to have faith that God could heal them? I'm not really sure. Maybe. Maybe it's easier for us because we have a clear report and can pray more specifically?

In the end, I am unsure that this potential debate point even matters. The truth is that when we press through the crowds (the people who have told us we're not good enough or have hurt us intentionally or not, the whisper of Satan that only spews lies to destroy us, our thoughts that would have us compare ourselves with everyone else) and touch Jesus, we receive our healing. We receive physical healing, emotional healing, healing from the false mindsets we've held onto for some reason or another. When was the last time we were really desperate to push through and touch God?

Friday, July 25, 2008

Go Away

Before I moved from Michigan, I was telling someone how my friends were going to throw me a "go away" party. Once we realized my mistake, laughter erupted. Of course my friends don't want me to go away, but they wanted to send me off nicely, so I would know that they cared. My "going away" party was amazing. So many people that I care for were there, I felt like the most special person in the world. People said sweet things and showed me love.

If they did want me to go away, they probably wouldn't have thrown me a party. They probably would have just gave me a swift kick in the pants. Thank goodness that wasn't the case! But, what do you do when you know that it's time for you to go away. Not move away, that list is a bit more concrete: pack shoes, underwear, jewelry, 8 lb. weights (if you want to hear the story, I'll tell you about it).

I don't get the feeling often, but I've recently felt like it was time for me to go away. To remove myself from the extra things and just retreat. There's no staying up until 4:30 in the morning talking to friends during a retreat like this. I deactivated my Facebook profile, turned off g-chat, and turned off my phone (sorry if you tried to call). I came to realize how much of a distraction those things were to my life. In one night, I got fed up enough to deactivate the FB! I always thought people who did things like that were seriously crazy. It's how I communicate with a lot of the people that I talk to; how could I give it up?! I'm not sure. I know I certainly didn't expect it to feel good that I don't currently feel obligated to check to see if someone posted on my wall or to see what people updated their statuses. It feels good to not constantly check my gmail to see if anyone's online to chat me up. There was freedom when I told these things to "go away."

I want everyone to know that I am okay, but right now I just need to take a break from the world. It's not personal, of course. It's just what I need to make it through right now.