Pause

The apostle Paul wrote this in the book of Romans: "It appears to me that whatever we suffer now will show up only dimly when compared to the wonders God has in store for us. It is as though all creation is standing on tiptoe longing to see an unforgettable vision, the children of God being born into wholeness" (paraphrase by Macrina Wiederkehr, Seasons of the Heart).

This serves as a reminder that God is at work, even now, bringing healing to the world — for all of us. Consider now the ways that healing might have already started all around you.

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Listen

He went, taking with him ten talents of silver, six thousand shekels of gold, and ten sets of garments. He brought the letter to the king of Israel, which read, “When this letter reaches you, know that I have sent to you my servant Naaman, that you may cure him of his leprosy.” When the king of Israel read the letter, he tore his clothes and said, “Am I God, to give death or life, that this man sends word to me to cure a man of his leprosy? Just look and see how he is trying to pick a quarrel with me.” But when Elisha the man of God heard that the king of Israel had torn his clothes, he sent a message to the king, “Why have you torn your clothes? Let him come to me, that he may learn that there is a prophet in Israel.”

2 Kings 5:5b-8

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Think

There’s a hole in the bucket dear Liza, dear Liza. So fix it, dear Henry, dear Henry, FIX IT!

This silly song’s banter between an old couple about repairing a bucket is almost as silly as the King of Israel’s response to Naaman’s letter. But when you’re used to resolving problems quickly with money, or by calling an army into action, then nothing is more frustrating than a problem you don’t have the power to solve.

When someone shares their pain with me – whether physical or emotional, my heart wants to FIX IT! I want to offer suggestions, recommend doctors or treatments that might help. But in most cases, I do not have the power to fix anything completely. Only God has this ability, to bring a person back to wholeness. When you don’t have a healing potion, then listening ears, encouraging words, and sensitive prayers point to the One who does have the power to heal, repair, and resolve. And that’s the best medicine we can offer.

Valerie Burton

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Pray

Healer of the sick and brokenhearted, hear my prayers on behalf of those whose bodies need healing and whose hearts need mending. Give me the grace and patience to wait for your intervention from the bottom of my toes to the edges of my fingertips. Amen.

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Go

Paul also wrote this (in 2 Corinthians 12:9-10): "...but he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.' So, I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities for the sake of Christ; for whenever I am weak, then I am strong."

Go now confident even in your weakness, in your sorrow, in your shortcomings, knowing that even in the middle of it all, Christ remains powerful within you.

Valerie Burton

Valerie Burton lives in Birmingham, Alabama, with her husband, Allan, their sons, Carter and Marshall, and dog, Byrd. She is the minister for Christian formation at Baptist Church of the Covenant. Life is good when there is coffee and a fire in the fireplace.

O Love How Deep

Nathan Hanson

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