"But for you who fear my name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in his wings. And you will go free, leaping with joy like calves let out to pasture. On the day when I act, you will tread upon the wicked as if they were dust under your feet," says the Lord of Heaven's Armies. Malachi 4:2-3
Last night, while celebrating with a friend the completion of her thesis, I met a young man obsessed with J.R.R. Tolkkien. Not just obsessed with Lord of the Rings, as I have been lately, but the author himself. As I am currently finishing the final book in the series, we focused on some of the details we love about the story. One that was especially powerful, was the prophecy about the King of Gondor being a healer.
They would know that the rightful king had returned if there was healing in his hands.
Sure enough Aragorn comes in, and with various herbs that only he seems to know how to use, he is able to revive several characters (including my favorite hobbit - Meriadoc!). One of the women who remembered the prophecy stands in awe of what she sees. And similar to the verses we read in Malachi, thus begins the events that lead to the destruction of the power of the Lord of Mordor, better known as Sauron.
Personally, it gave me chills to think about the parallelism in the Bible of Jesus' power to heal. It's bigger than just health of the body, although I am convinced that they can be connected.
Take the story of a pastor who recently visited us in OM. He told us the story of his ability to finally forgive someone in his family. In his prayer of release from the burden to forgive, the word "sinus" came to mind. He was confused, to be honest, but felt it might be a nudging from the Holy Spirit.
Near that time, he had his annual check up on his sinuses. Typically they have to be cleared through a surgery that takes a lot of time and money. Imagine his surprise then, when the doctor says that he can't find even a trace of whatever it is that causes sinus infections (I'm not a medical professional, so I don't know the terms!). The pastor is convinced that the healing of the relationship between himself and his kin, brought a personal healing of his sinuses.
A young man in our community has been sick for a long time. His name is Lucas. While I am unclear on all of the details, what I know is a few weeks back our team doctor had a chance to visit him in the hospital. With pure boldness, she told him of his need to know Jesus. His need to give his life over to him in order to be healed. Lucas was in agreement, and so he prayed.
The next day, he got better. The people rejoiced.
Today, I got a phone call informing me that Lucas died this morning. I was the one who had to call our team doctor to let her know, and to say the least she was surprised. My response was to write. Is to write.
Do we have to make sense out of everything? No, because it's impossible. There are too many things way above our pay grade, and that's a good thing.
For this reason I said that they "can" be connected, the healing of the body and the healing of burdens in our lives (such as sin), not that they are connected. At least not always.
But I will say this, the healing from sin is so much greater than the healing of the body. I am currently unable to fully empathize, as I have been recently given a clean bill of health after another check up on my knee. I am ecstatic that I can return to jogging and eventually running again (with a knee brace, to be on the safe side!), but then it was brought to home with a conversation I had just last night with another OM team member.
He was working this summer in the hospital, providing food for the various patients. He told me first about the many awkward encounters he had with those who were naked, or the constant sight of blood which made him queasy. But then he explained how interesting it was to see some patients, dying, and completely miserable. Others, also dying, yet always grateful to receive the food from him. The stark contrast between those ready to die, and those who are not.
Maybe it has something to do with the peace of having lived a full life, because Jesus had come in and healed them of their true pain. Or better said, that they had allowed Jesus to come in and heal them. They believed, and were set free.
Maybe that's it. And it's just skinning the surface of what the phrase "healing in his wings" even means..
love and chau!