By Sarah Katherine Hart
Life-we love it, we cherish it, we hold on to it with all the will we have. We love others, and in so doing, we love their lives and hold on to them as tightly as we do our own.
When we think about life, when we think about ourselves and our loved ones, what single need touches us more than any other?
What single need gets our attention and turns us as individuals toward God quicker and more forcefully than any other?
Yes, the need to be well and whole, the need for healing.
The Truth About Your Body
Born into a physical world, we human beings inhabit physical bodies. Some seem to be more “perfect” than others, some more physically fit for the rigors of everyday living. But what is the real truth-the underlying, unchanging truth-about the bodies in which the human spirit resides for a moment, a year, eighty years-a lifetime?
“We are the temple of the living God” (2 Cor. 6:16).
Try thinking of your body as a temple or as a vessel, a container for the spirit of God. It’s both humbling and awe-inspiring, isn’t it?
The physical body is made of complex organisms called cells, which when joined together, make bones, tissues, organs, hair and skin, nails and cartilage, and the many other member components.
Our minds are complex computers, taking in data and returning needed answers. Our eyes are large lenses that capture the world in pictures; our ears are auditory receivers that translate action into sound. Our arms and legs allow us to move ourselves and other things from one place to another at our will. Every cell and every organ has a special function, and each one operates in cooperation with all the others to accomplish the proper functioning of the whole body.
Yet we are so much more than a physical body, and being healthy and whole means more than simple physical well-being.
Within the heart of everything is an activity that we call God. In Truth, we are whole in the mind of God. In God, there is no death or disease, for “God is spirit” (Jn. 4:24), and nothing can separate us from God. “For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God” (Rom. 8:38-39).
As a temple of the living God, your body deserves your respect and your faithful attention. Take time out to appreciate it, to give thanks for the things that you can do with ease and efficiency. Do not take this temple of the living God for granted; it was created especially for you.
The Will to Live in Health and Wholeness
The will to live is strong in the human body. How many times have we heard stories of people who miraculously survived plane crashes or automobile wrecks to once again live very effective. lives? But can we will healing?
Being well and whole is part of the human will; that’s true. And it is that will or that desire which sends us seeking help medical and spiritual-whenever we are faced with ill health. It is our will to live and to live good lives that sends us to the doctor’s office or to the prayer chapel or to a friend’s house when we experience conditions which our bodies are not comfortable with or which frighten us.
We do not want to be ill, we do not want to suffer, nor do we want to see those we love be ill or suffer. This is why we seek with all our hearts for a cure, for “living water” (Jn. 4:10), even a fountain of youth.
In seeking the healing that our hearts so long for, many questions arise. Why do some people respond to medical treatment and others do not? Why do some people respond to spiritual treatment and others do not? Why are some children born with birth defects or into impoverished areas of the world where they will never receive the medical help they need to live long lives? What about the innocent victims of accidents or incurable diseases?
We do not have the answers to all these questions. On a personal level, one-to-one, we can say that we do not know why life happens as it does, because we do not know what is in another person’s soul, nor should we judge. What we must put our faith in is the fact that every person as a child of God is on an eternal journey back to God, and the vehicle which will carry us there is not the physical body but our awareness of God.
It is our awareness of God that sees us through the challenges of life. It is our awareness of God that gives us new life in the face of death. It is our love for God and our faith in God that lifts us from the depths of despair into the heights of joy.
We do know, however, that if we should give our bodies less than the proper nutrition and exercise they need, we may put them in jeopardy. Sometimes it seems that we are in jeopardy when we have done nothing to put ourselves in that place. What then? How did we get there? More important yet, how do we get out of the place we have found ourselves in?
There is something we can all do, no matter what our financial or physical conditions may be. We can pray whenever we are faced with the uncertainty of accident or illness. We can turn our attention to the life of God within us. We can put our imagination to work and visualize the life energy that moves the cells of our bodies in orderly ways, giving them new life and new energy.
Prayer helps us better handle the situations we face because it creates a channel through which we can receive the strength and courage we need. God is our strength, and through prayer, we realize that God is always with us to help us in whatever way we need.
Yet, how often when we pray for healing do we make promises to God? How often do we hear ourselves pray, “God, if You will just heal me, I will serve You all the rest of my life.” We make our service to God conditional on the outcome of our prayers. Can we then be open channels through which God as life can come forth in the physical body we inhabit? Only when we come to understand that our loving and serving God need to come before anything else do we see that life in the physical body is God’s way of expressing the life which God is.
Praying for Healing
Probably the first thing most of us need to do when we are praying for our own healing or for another’s is to calm down. Anxiety or tension, those feelings that just seem to rise within whenever the body is not functioning properly, can disrupt our prayer process.
Take just a moment to breathe steadily. Do it consciously. There’s nothing magical about breathing or being aware of it as you do. It simply takes your attention from outside of yourself and puts it back inside yourself.
Let yourself calm down. Relax For just an instant, do not think about the problem.
Do not let your fearful thoughts surface. If they do, however, gently remind yourself that for this minute, just this one minute, you are not going to let them rule your thoughts.
Now, think God. Say God quietly to yourself. Let your every thought go to that place of God within you. Let your every feeling be only of God. This is what you need and what you really want-an awareness of God, a moment in the presence of God.
God is always with you, but this moment you are with God. And this is what makes the difference in your life and in the lives of those you are praying for. You are with God. Let your voice speak what is in your heart. O God, l am here with You now, in this very moment. Thank You for always being here for me.
For as long as it takes, rest in this awareness. Let the assurance that God is with you touch all the cells of your body. See them filled with the light of God that directs their movement and function. See them working as a team-well-trained, well-coached, physically capable of doing what needs to be done. See them reaching out to one another, helping one another accomplish the goal of good health.
Hear the love of God as the symphony of life being sung from your cells. Imagine them as a great choir singing only for the glory of God. What beautiful music they make!
Let yourself be filled with the zeal of God. Let the feeling that rises within you carry you into the day ahead. Let it put a smile on your face. Let it fill your voice with love and compassion. Let it light up your eyes with understanding. And let it fill you with peace as you lie down to sleep each night.
Tine Health and Happiness
“For God all things are possible” (Mt. 19:26).
We believe that there is no condition beyond the power of God to heal. This is why we always pray for healing.
Life is eternal, and because we cannot know what is in another’s heart or what path another’s life might take, we pray for the healing of the whole person-mind, body, and spirit. When the person is whole, then the mind and body and spirit express that wholeness in every way possible.
Like so many things in life, we may think that if we have really good health, then we will be very happy. It is true that good health makes it possible to enjoy the things of life so much more than if we are suffering with ill health. However, it is also true that being healthy does not insure our happiness. Only wholeness will make us happy, wholeness in the sense of being whole in spirit, whole in God. This realization is what makes life truly worth living.
When we pray for healing and it does not seem to happen, we do not question God or our faith in God. However difficult it may seem to be at times, we hold to the truth that healing has taken place-maybe not the physical healing our hearts have longed to see, but healing of another kind, perhaps spiritual healing, healing of a relationship, healing of the understanding.
And when those we have prayed for pass on in death, we know that even then healing has taken place. We believe that sometimes healing comes through death. It comes through the release of the physical pain and the acceptance of the gift of eternal life.
Silent Unity Will Pray With You
Should you ever need someone to pray with you for healing or for anything else, please feel free to call on Silent Unity at any time of the day or night. Write: Silent Unity, 1901 NW Blue Parkway, Unity Village, MO 64065-0001. Or call: (816) 246-5400. If you have no means to pay for the telephone call, dial 1-800-669-7729. Someone will always be there to pray with you.