My wife and I took a trip to eastern Washington to celebrate our anniversary. Late September is the perfect time to visit the Cascade Mountains, as the vine and broadleaf maples are usually at their peak of fall color. On the first morning of our vacation, we stopped at Walmart to pick up a power cord for my cell phone. To no one’s surprise, we found someone who needed healing.
Walmart seems to be a sanctuary for people with physical problems. You can always find someone wearing an immobilizer or cast, walking with a cane, or in a wheelchair. I have to confess; I’ve started looking for people with disabilities everywhere I go and Walmart is a great place to find people who need healing. This morning we found an elderly couple hobbling through the store in obvious pain. The gentleman was using a cane and his wife was leaning on a shopping cart for support.
I love my wife’s patience with me. Like a toddler with a new toy, I asked her if we could take time to pray for them. She said yes despite the fact that this might delay our plans for the day. There’s a little bit of anxiety you must deal with when you walk up to strangers and ask if they want to be healed. Vincent Van Gogh once said, “If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint’ then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced.” There’s a similar voice inside of us saying, “You cannot heal strangers.” I’ve learned to heal strangers in spite of that voice and over time it has been silenced.
“Good morning, how are you folks doing today?”
The woman replied, “We’re doing okay I guess. Isn’t the weather just beautiful this morning?”
“It’s a glorious day. The fall colors are amazing. Say, I noticed you both seem to have some health problems. My wife and I pray for a lot of people in stores and we see quite a few of them healed.”
“You mean you pray for people right in the store? I’ve never heard of that. What church do you go to?”
“We’re from out of town. We came here to celebrate our wedding anniversary.” Turning to her husband I asked, “Sir, may I ask how you injured yourself?”
“Years ago I had a little accident with a logging truck. It’s a long story but it did a lot of nerve damage and left me partly paralyzed.”
“How about you, ma’am?”
“I have neuropathy in my feet from diabetes. I’ve also had a couple of bouts with cancer but God got me through them. He’s been so good to me.”
“Sir, do you mind if I pray with you to be healed?”
“That would be alright with me.”
“Are you having any pain right now?”
“I sure am. My back hurts all the time.” Smiling and pointing at his wife he continued, “That’s why I’m using her cane to walk.”
“On a scale from one to ten with ten being the worst pain you can imagine, how bad is your pain right now?”
“Oh, I’d say maybe a five or six.”
My wife and I placed our hands on his back. Curious shoppers walked by. A few shook their heads or rolled their eyes at us. I tried not to let their reactions bother me. “I command pain to leave right now in the name of Jesus. Nerves, tendons, ligaments and muscles be healed right now. Holy Spirit I bless your work of healing in this man. Lord, bring your presence upon him. Spirits of pain I command you to leave.” After a few minutes of prayer I asked how he felt. He shifted his weight from side to side and walked in a small circle in front of us. Slowly, a smile began to appear on his weathered face.
“Well that’s the darndest thing. I don’t seem to be hurting at all.”
I couldn’t contain my joy and yelled out, “Yay, Jesus!” I began laughing and turned to his wife. “How about you ma’am? Are you ready to be healed?”
“Why not?” She replied with a smile.
We prayed for his wife and within a few minutes she also felt nearly complete relief of her symptoms. As we were about to let them finish their shopping, they wanted our names and e-mail address, so we exchanged information, prayed a blessing over their finances and relationships and went our separate ways.
We found a power cord for my cell phone, but I wouldn’t have cared if we didn’t find one. I left the store overjoyed that I have a friend like Jesus who heals people. His power is more than enough for me.