Anyway - is it Spring? Is it? Really? Is England in the lovely words of Pen Wilcock finally turning its face towards the sun? I mean, I know it's not been cold but I feel like we have had a winter and a half and we haven't been flooded or anything so goodness knows how those poor people in Somerset feel. I am tempted to go into garden and yell at flowers "Don't come out - not yet, it's too soon" but don't suppose they will listen.
Got up early today to try and do some work on Alpha talk I have been
So I have read a bit of Phillip Yancey and he isn't too convinced about healing because he doesn't think he has actually seen one and then I read some Richard Foster and he seems to see about two every twenty minutes. The Alpha talk online seems to consist mostly of Nicky Gumbel describing the miracles that happened when John Wimber visited his church which is all very nice and everything but not much help to me really.
So I am thinking that I am just going to have to go for the truth as I see it (no need to panic pastor)These are very random thoughts but no change there eh?
I have never seen a limb or a tooth grow or anything else that would make the recipient of the healing into some sort of freak show that flew in the face of nature. I would not be stupid enough to say it hasn't happened. I have never seen it.
The healing "industry" has attracted some unscrupulous characters who prey on the vulnerable. It's unfortunate but true.
It's easy to be detached and cynical about healing and prayer right up until the precise second when you or someone you adore is diagnosed with something. In my experience, people are then far more open to the possibility of a miracle.
For me, healing is not just about the physical and all that stuff about one leg longer than the other. It is about the whole person. Jesus, being the Son of God, knew that, I think. He told people that their sins were forgiven - releasing them from crippling guilt. He showed that positive faith in him would lead to a release from anger and shame and these things had physical impacts.
He also touched people and they were healed. Can't get away from it.
I am convinced through my own experience and those of people I know that God does heal today. Although I had extensive medical treatment for which I am eternally grateful, my prognosis was still poor and I am, in the words of the great Shirley Maclaine, "Still here" many many years on.
If I have a conclusion - half baked I know - but this is Alpha, not 10 years at Bible College - It's that we don't pray enough , don't ask enough so we don't know what God can and does want to do. We walk into prayer often just when we are desperate with no experience of the faith levels and the relationship with God that will be needed. We expect such huge things from God after just farting about on the edges of a faith filled relationship and then things don't happen.
So that's what I think. I just have to put it into coherent thoughts, trying not to use the word "fart" in church. You could pray for me if you wanted.
Before I go....Proud parent alert
This is FOW1's band. (He's on the right) They won Battle of the Bands at York Uni last night. This is apparently a big deal so well done. I did watch some of it on Student TV. To be honest I thought it was all a bit of a racket but as FOW2 pointed out - "Mum - it's not really for you is it?"