Faith and Healing – It Doesn’t Mean What You Think
I stared at my phone in shock and disbelief. Tears filled my eyes as I read her message over and over. Finally, I put the phone down and walked away.
But her words followed me.
“If you don’t come to this event, you will never be healed. You don’t have enough faith.”
This lady had invited me to an event that advertised worship, miracles, and healing for anyone who came.
But due to scheduling conflicts, I wasn’t able to go.
I knew she meant well. I knew she just wanted me to be free from the chronic illness plaguing me.
But her words hurt.
And they made me wonder:
- Are faith and healing really that dependent on each other?
- Is my healing really tied to certain events I attend? Or specific prayers I pray?
- Could it be true that my lack of healing was due to a lack of faith?
But as I pondered these things it occurred to me that if any of those statements were true, then wouldn’t my healing be all up to me and my actions?
Rather than according to God’s will and plan for my life?
And if you think about it . . . does it just take faith to believe God could heal you?
Or does it also take an incredible amount of faith to trust Him . . . even when He doesn’t?
The Importance of Faith in Healing
The importance of faith in healing appears to be seen in this verse in Matthew. When Jesus was in his hometown of Nazareth, the Bible states that:
“He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them. He was amazed at their lack of faith.”-Mark 6:5-6 NIV
This passage makes it seem like Jesus heals because of faith. And He could not heal many people in this town because of their lack of faith.
So, do we need faith to be healed?
Perhaps a better question is this:
Is God limited by my lack of faith?
I think we can all agree that God is not limited by anything we do.
So, there must be something more to this.
What is the connection between faith and healing?
Another place where we can see the connection between faith and healing is in Mark 9:22-24 where we meet a father who brought his son who was possessed by a demon to Jesus.
The father states, “But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.”
Then Jesus states, “‘If you can’? . . . Everything is possible for one who believes.”
And immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”
The boy’s father struggled with doubt and asked God to help him build his faith.
The exciting thing is that even though the boy’s father only had a little bit of faith, Jesus still chose to heal his son.
This shows us that the relationship between faith and healing is not really about how MUCH faith we have.
Because God can work with the little bit of faith we have.
And get it to grow.
“If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”-Matthew 17:20 NIV
There are also cases in the Bible where Jesus healed someone with no faith.
The man by the pool at Bethsaida didn’t have any faith that Jesus could heal Him, because he didn’t even know who Jesus was until afterward. (John 5:1-13)
And the blind man in John 9 didn’t ask for healing, so he couldn’t have had any faith for it.
But Jesus chose to heal him anyway.
While faith is not a necessity for healing, it is often the channel God chooses to work his healing miracles through.
We see this in passages like Luke 17:19 where Jesus tells the 10 lepers their faith made them well.
Or in Mark 4:34 where the woman who had been bleeding for 12 years was healed and Jesus said it was her faith that made her well.
Does God Heal by Faith?
So, does God heal by faith or not?
Perhaps it would help to think of faith as an instrument.
The power to create music comes from the person who plays the instrument. Not the instrument itself.
God is the source of power behind healing.
He is the one who chooses whether to use the instrument of our faith to heal us. Or to heal us just because He wants to.
And then use that experience to draw us to a saving faith in Himself.
Faith When Healing Doesn’t Come
Even if we have faith that God can heal us. We aren’t guaranteed He will.
There is an interesting story in the Bible where a leper comes to Jesus and states:
“If you are willing, Lord, you can make me clean.” (Matthew 8:2)
It would appear from this passage that the man had faith.
He was a leper which meant he was condemned to live outside of the town and was not allowed to touch anyone. But in this passage, we see that large crowds were following Jesus.
And this man risked approaching Jesus despite the crowd.
No one takes that kind of risk without having faith that the risk is worth it.
So, this man clearly had faith that Jesus could heal him. But he puts this clause on it: “if you are willing”.
Perhaps it isn’t so much about having the faith to be healed. But whether it is God’s WILL to heal.
This is why it is not right to tell someone they “just need to have more faith”.
Because the issue might not be about their faith at all. But the fact that God is not willing to heal them.
But why would God not be willing to heal someone?
To be honest, we probably won’t be able to answer this question in this life. But someday it will all make sense when we enter Heaven.
What we need more than answers . . . is Jesus.
We need to spend time in His presence. To cling to His precious promises to us. And to remember that even if He doesn’t heal us in this life . . . He will heal us in the next one.
No matter what happens, we can choose to have faith and believe with every ounce of our being that:
- God is for us. (Romans 8:31)
- God loves us. (John 3:16)
- And God is with us. (Deut. 31:8)
This is how we can have faith even when healing doesn’t come.
Faith and Healing Prayer
This prayer for faith and healing can be used to start the conversation between you and God.
I come before You to ask in faith for You to heal me. I know You can heal me because You can do anything. But I also believe You are sovereign over everything.
I choose to trust You and surrender to Your plan for my life. Even if that plan includes things I would rather not face.
I know You love me. I know You are for me. And I know You are with me.
So, anything You allow in my life will be used for Your glory and my good.
Therefore, I choose to trust You and ask that You either heal my body. Or give me the strength to live every day for You . . . with a broken body.
Thank you, Lord.
(Download this FREE printable prayer HERE!)
Faith, Hope, and Healing
While there is a definite faith and healing connection . . . it doesn’t mean what we think.
It’s not about trying to muster up more faith in order to be healed.
It’s about choosing to hold onto the hope we have in Jesus. And choosing to trust God no matter what happens because we know:
Jesus is not just our healer. He is our Lord.
Anything God chooses to give us in this life is because of His graciousness to us. Not because we are entitled to it. Not because we have enough faith.
But simply because He chooses to give it.
We just have to decide if we are willing to live the life God has planned for us. Even if that means struggling with poor health.
A lack of healing is NOT due to a lack of faith. But God can use it to GROW our faith.
Until we can honestly say, “Lord, I have faith that you can heal me . . . but even if you don’t . . . I choose to trust You.”
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