Highland Baptist Church
Saturday, May 25, 2013
Helping People Follow Jesus
During the prayer time of the last night of the Amber Rose (March 2006) Healing Conference in Fort Worth, The speaker Bill Johnson (of Bethel Church in Redding, California) encouraged people to get out their cell phones to pray over folks not present in the room, if the Lord so led them. This conference was our first exposure to this "healing stuff," so Pastor Bill's telling folks to call people to pray for them was startling to me, but no less so than anything else that had been going on at the conference—and plenty else was going on.
Anyway, the instant Pastor Bill mentioned cell phones, I "heard" the Lord say, "Call your mother."
At the time, my mother was 83 years old. She lives in another state out west. Five years before, she had shattered her right femur (thigh bone) in an exercise accident. After three surgeries, her right leg was about an inch shorter than normal, and her right foot was turned inward. In order to walk somewhat normally, she needed a big build-up in her right shoe and a walker or a cane. Despite these aids, she still limped. All this was very discouraging to someone long accustomed to good health and mobility.
Also at the time, my mother was not a believer. She faithfully attended her church, but had little desire for a personal relationship with the Lord and no awareness of the longing He had to redeem and fulfill her.
So God says, "Call your mother."
I discussed this with the Lord, but never having won such a debate before, I gave in, got out my cell phone, and called my mother.
I explained that I didn't have time to talk, but that I knew she had long been discouraged about the limitations of having such leg problems, and so I just wanted to pray over her.
"That's very nice. I'll talk to you in a few days."
"No, I mean right now. I want to pray for you right now."
Silence on the phone. I could hear her eyebrows go up.
"...OK, go ahead."
I was a bit rattled at this point and don't recall what exactly I prayed - something about encouragement and for the leg to grow out. (As I said, all this was very new to me.) I didn't "feel" anything and my mother didn't either, so after a nervous minute or so of praying, I got off the phone, greatly relieved to have finished what God told me to do, and having no idea what would come of it, if anything.
When we returned home a few days later, there were several terse messages from my mother on the answering machine - "Call me. I have to talk to you." Uh oh....
It happened this way: after our call, my mother stayed in her chair, feeling a weird "tingling, pulling sensation" in her short leg. After ten minutes of this, she then felt the urge to get up and walk. She started walking, then jogging around the house.
The next day, she went to the shopping mall, walked for two hours, with no cane, no walker, and no build-up in her shoe. And she no longer limped.
The Lord grew out the leg of an 83-year-old woman!
In this miracle healing, my mother's right foot was not turned back out, so when we talked about this, she said, "Maybe I was good enough to get my leg stretched out, but not good enough to get my foot turned back."
I explained that none of us are "good enough" for any of God's kindnesses. The truth is that this healing is but a small demonstration of the limitless love the Lord has for her, a love that none of us could ever earn but which Jesus offers us freely, and that if she simply opened her heart to Him and received His Spirit, she would have an indescribably wonderful peace, joy, contentment—life.
For a year and a half, she did not take His invitation. Then in August of 2007, my mother prayed with me to give her life to the Lord and receive His Spirit. Her heart is now right with Him. The power who healed her is now the Lord within her.
I am forever changed by what the Lord did in my mother's body, but her salvation is the healing I'd yearned for. Thank you Lord! (PS, my mother is now 86; on her most recent visit in November of 2008, she didn't bother bringing a cane. Still walks fine.)