[ Miracles ]
Faith and Healing
I often attend Full Gospel Business Men's Fellowship meetings, a Christian layman's outreach organisation in Auckland, New Zealand, where I live.
One day, a group from our own East Auckland Chapter was headed to visit another F.G.B.M.F.I. chapter on the Hibiscus Coast, just north of Auckland, where we were to share brief testimonies.
Everything had seemed to get in my way that afternoon (traffic and so on) and the others had left without me. I felt discouraged and considered not going.
Then I thought, what was the point of going through all those problems if I gave up now? I was going to be very late, but I prayed that the Lord would get me there on time -- at least not too late for anything important.
Also, the Lord had shown me in a vision: 1) that there would be someone at the meeting with a spinal injury -- I could see clearly what looked to be a break -- and, 2) a hand tanned by the sun and held palm-first in a kind of claw fashion.
Eventually I arrived at the meeting and, to my amazement, they were only just beginning to be seated for dinner. I had missed nothing but some informal fellowship beforehand.
The President of our Chapter told me a man with a spinal injury was there and wanted us to pray for him afterwards. I told him the Lord had shown me this and I would be happy to support him in this.
After dinner we each shared brief testimonies of what the Lord has done in our lives and then the meeting was opened up to a time of prayer for any who required it. I prayed for a couple of men.
Later, the President called me to come and help with what he was doing. There was a man sitting on a chair with several others standing around him.
The President said to me, "Would you take hold of his ankles and pray." Others placed their hands on the man in accordance with the President's instructions. Not knowing what was wrong with the man, I began to pray in "tongues," that holy prayer-language given to many when they receive the "baptism of the Holy Spirit" (I Corinthians 12).
After a few seconds, these words were 'spoken' into my mind: "And immediately his feet and ankles were made strong." I recognised the words as coming from Acts, Ch. 3, where the disciples Peter and John were making their way to the temple when they encountered a man lame from birth. Peter said to him, "I have no silver or gold, but I give you what I have; in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk." ...'and immediately his feet and ankles were made strong'. I thought that was a bit curious, but kept on praying.
The man started pulling his feet away from me, so I held on tightly and kept on praying. He began to pull harder, and I thought, "O.K. If you don't want me to pray for you any more, I won't." So I let go.
The others seem to have stopped also and were talking. I had been so intent with my own little bit down on the floor, I did not know what they were talking about, but then the man started to get up.
Someone passed him a walking stick with a large round knob on the top. As he went to put his hand on it I was astonished that I recognised his hand from the visions earlier. Then he pulled himself up and began to shuffle off slowly, amidst cries of amazement.
"What's the fuss?" I asked a man standing by me.
"He's walking!" he exclaimed.
"Yes, I can see that," I said. "But he's not walking very well, is he?"
"That's the point," the man said. "He is a paraplegic!"
"Oh, come on," I said. "I can see that he is able to walk a bit, although not very well."
"He could not walk at all before."
Apparently the paraplegic had been paralysed from the waist down and used the cane to drag his legs along. It took some convincing for me to finally accept that I had just witnessed a miracle.
Two day days later, this man jumped a fence to convince himself that he was really healed.
The man, whose name is Peter, later became a Christian (but that is a story in itself) and some months later he visited our Chapter to share his testimony.
I witnessed for myself as he jumped up and down that he was fully healed. I also heard how he went back to the hospital to show them what had happened.
The surgeon could not believe his eyes and urged Peter to get back in bed in case he did further damage. He even got Peter's x-rays out to show him the clear break in his spine and explained again that there was no known surgery that could mend that break.
When Peter left, the surgeon was still in disbelief, even though he'd taken another x-ray which showed Peter's spine to now be perfect. The nurses were excited for him. His one sorrow was the eyes of the other patients and their unspoken question, "Why not me?"
Auckland, New Zealand