Bible Reading: Matthew 20:29-34
The Holy Spirit supernaturally and sovereignly gives the gifts of healings as the need arises. In the original Greek both the words gifts and healings are plural.
Different people have different gifts of healing at different times and in different circumstances. It may well be that an individual is effective in this gift for certain ailments.
My wife and I have experienced gifts of healings in two specific areas, seeing God give barren couples children and I have often seen neck and shoulder pains healed. When praying for people with shoulder and neck pains I have often heard God speak the words, “In that day the Lord will end the bondage of his people. He will break the yoke of slavery and lift it from their shouldersa” [Isaiah 10:27 NLT]. In each case, after being asked to pray with people with neck and shoulder pains, I have commanded the yoke of bondage to be broken off people and seen them healed.
Isn’t it strange that we have seen most success in these two areas and not so much in other areas? Perhaps this is because the Holy Spirit has given these specific gifts for certain ailments. This does not, however, mean that we should not be open to the Holy Spirit to give us other gifts of healings.
Gifts of healings could also relate to the way in which God releases healing. He may heal en masse through prayer without the laying on of hands, or He may heal each person one at a time through the laying on of hands.
When we are faced with a sick person we can try to avoid this vital ministry of healing the sick, or we can be open to the Holy Spirit to pray for the sick. As I look at the ministry of Jesus it seems that there are three vital keys. Firstly, the word compassion – Jesus saw sick people and had compassion on them and healed them [see Mark 1:40-45; Matthew 14:13-14; 20:29-34]. Don’t you feel compassion when you see sick people? If God wants you to heal the sick surely you will feel an increasing compassion for them. Secondly, listen to the Holy Spirit – what is He saying that you should do. Remember that Jesus always worked out of a relationship with His Father [Matthew 5:19,30]. Thirdly, we must act in faith. It takes faith to reach out and minister healing to people.
How do you know that God has given you a gift to heal the sick? You will see them healed! It may take time, but don’t give up. John Wimber prayed for healing for many people before seeing a breakthrough. In the years that followed hundreds of people were healed!
It is obvious that God wants His children to pray for the sick and see them healed. Are you open to the Holy Spirit? Are you prepared to take a step of faith and pray for the sick, believing that God wants to use you in this way?
In our Bible reading today the multitude warned the two blind men to be quiet. How did Jesus react? What would you have done in that situation?