Practicing the Art of Healing
I love watching Eric Johnson play guitar. His screaming solos, crazy barre chords and lighting-fast fretting simply amaze me. Sometimes I wonder how a person learns to play guitar so well.
When I watch a big league slugger drive a 96 mile-an-hour fastball over the wall for a home run, and when they hit home runs repeatedly, like they do in the All-Star Game’s home run derby, I wonder how these guys learn to hit a ball so well.
Jack Nicklaus was asked once how he became such a consistent golfer. He said, “Excellence in golfing is a matter of learning how to do a few things extremely well, and learning how to do them well consistently.”
It’s easy to imagine that there must only be a handful of people who are born with these extraordinary “gifts”, but the fact is, if you or I put in the time it takes to learn one of these skills, we will eventually master it. Hitting a fastball out of the park, playing guitar like a master, or sinking a fifty-foot putt are really nothing more than a matter of learning how to do a couple of things extremely well and learning to do them well consistently. Any individual can excel in any field they choose. The key to success is practice, practice, practice, and the same principle applies to healing.
There are a lot of misunderstandings about how divine healing works. I can’t straighten them all out all out in this message, but two of the main points people get wrong with regard to healing are the idea that God is the one who decides who gets healed and when, and the idea that only a few gifted people can operate in healing.
God does not decide (except in a few rare cases) who gets healed, and when they will be healed. If you think He does, you might go on a field trip with a person who operates successfully in healing. When you see 90% of the people they lay hands on receive healing, it should cause you to re-evaluate how healing works. You might even switch from believing that God chooses who gets healed to the equally wrong belief that some people have a special gift for healing.
Here’s the truth about how healing works: Jesus gave every believer all the power and authority they need to heal anyone they choose to heal (see Matthew 10:5-8.) Jesus gave us authority over every type of sickness and disease. The indwelling of the Holy Spirit in the believer is the source of power that makes healing happen. We can’t accuse God of making things unfair when it comes to healing. He’s already given us everything we need. The trick is not figuring out what we must do to get God to heal someone. When someone is not healed, it isn’t because God is holding back their healing. Healing comes when we learn how to use the authority and release the power He’s already given us.
And how do we learn to release the power to heal?
Lately, I’ve been approached by friends who have become disappointed with God or with themselves because they’ve tried to get someone healed and nothing happened. They’ve come to me and asked, “What am I doing wrong?”
Disappointment with God always comes from a wrong understanding of who He is and how He operates. I’m going to be brutally honest about this, and if what I say offends you, I’m sorry.
If you only pray for the sick to be healed occasionally, you’re not going to see them healed consistently. Most of the time, you’re only going to experience frustration and it’s likely that frustration will turn into anger toward God. Disappointment over failed attempts to heal people when you’re only doing it once in a while is a bit like picking up a guitar a couple of times a year and wondering why you can’t play your favorite lick, or like going up against a major league pitcher and wondering why you can’t hit their fastball.
You’ll never have success in healing as long as you’re content to do it once in a while. Healing is an art form that requires instruction, correction and lots and lots of practice. The best healers are not the ones who are the most gifted. They’re the ones who practice the most. Learning how to release healing and miracles is a process. And to be honest, most of us don’t like the process. We’d rather have God just do His thing and heal our friends so we can get on to more interesting things. But that’s not how healing works.
Jesus took the twelve out repeatedly and demonstrated miracles for them then watched as they did healing and deliverance themselves. He tutored them and fine-tuned their approach, correcting their mistakes until they became proficient. It’s no different for us today. We have the Holy Spirit as our tutor for the miraculous.
Healing, like anything else, must be done over and over again until you learn how to do it well and how to do it consistently. It’s in the trial and error and in the hours of practice that we learn how to eliminate mistakes, grow our faith and learn the ways of God.
Everyone I know (without exception) who operates proficiently in the miraculous, does so because they’ve committed themselves to making it their lifestyle, and not just an occasional thing they do when a friend or relative is in a crisis. The time to learn how to operate in healing and miracles is not when you or your loved one lies sick or dying in the hospital. The best time to prepare for the kinds of emergencies we’ll all face is during times of peace.
If you need help getting started I have a lot of resources here on my website that can help you.