12 In one of the villages, Jesus met a man with an advanced case of leprosy. When the man saw Jesus, he bowed with his face to the ground, begging to be healed. “Lord,” he said, “if you are willing, you can heal me and make me clean.”
13 Jesus reached out and touched him. “I am willing,” he said. “Be healed!” And instantly the leprosy disappeared. Luke 5:12-13 NLT
Probably most people, when faced with a life-threatening illness, consider prayer as an option. Both fans and followers often reach out to God in moments of serious crisis. There is no record of this leprous man being a follower of Christ. He most likely had heard of Him and that He had healed people. He is begging and says, “Lord if you are willing, you can heal me and make me clean. Jesus touches him and says what all of us would hope to hear." He said, “I am willing.”
Often we struggle when we pray for loved ones or ourselves, and the prayer doesn’t get answered in the way we would like or hope. Regardless of what happens when we pray or what doesn’t happen God is good. He is always gracious and good on our behalf. We trust Him and His will to be done on earth as it is in heaven. The cycle of life on this earth includes tragedy, suffering, and death. All of us must face those things.
It is heartbreaking when a child dies, or someone passes unexpectedly. We are filled with grief and often ask 'why did this happen'? We may never know this side of eternity, but God is good, and He is there for us. It may be healing, or it may be His comforting presence when we walk through the valley of the shadow of death we don’t have to be afraid. There will come a day when there will be no more suffering or sorrow. There will be no more tears or heartache. Keep faithful. It’s okay to remind the Lord that He can do whatever He wants if He is willing. Regardless, you will keep your faith and know that He loves you.
I say this with care, but I wonder if a fierce, insistent desire for a miracle - even a physical healing - sometimes betrays a lack of faith rather than an abundance of it. When yearning for a miraculous resolution to a problem, do we make our loyalty to God contingent on whether he reveals himself yet again in the seen world? –Phillip Yancey
Wes Humble is the Executive Director of Ministry and Community Relations at Liberty HealthShare. He has thirty years of experience in various pastoral and editorial roles, and he is passionate about responding to the spiritual needs of both ministry staff and members.