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Costly Mistakes in Ministry and Redemption

Years ago, I was called to a hospital to pray for a young woman who endured a brain aneurysm. She was in a coma and had been so for days. My friends went to feed the parking meter, and I was left alone with her. I asked the Lord to bring her out of the coma so she could agree with me regarding her healing. He agreed and within 10 seconds or so, she opened her eyes. Unfortunately and simultaneously, her mother, who had left the room before we arrived, reentered and asked me who I was, concerned that a stranger was in the room.

However, she saw her daughter awake and went right to her, very emotional, talking frantically to her and calling for the nurses. Interestingly enough, her daughter fixed her gaze at me all through this. I knew she knew she had been revived for the Prayer of Agreement, but disconcerted by her mother’s entrance and approaching nurses, I fluffed it. I told the mother I was a there to pray for her daughter and asked if I could. Cautiously, she said yes but in my flustered state, I didn’t do what I had myself asked for i.e., a Prayer of Agreement, and instead prayed a tepid prayer that I knew didn’t even make it out the window. Obedience and boldness are so important.

She began an instant improvement from that day on, but I went home and wept that day, because I knew I had not done what I was called to do. Each day saw further improvement and positive reports from the doctors, but I was cheered not a bit. On the day they were transferring her out of intensive care to the regular ward due to her improving condition, she died. This came as a shock to everyone but me.

Yes, I did beat myself up for a while over that. Do I still beat myself up? Of course not! It is often harder to forgive ourselves than others, but I learned long ago that wallowing in self accusation is a favorite trap of the enemy. She was saved and is walking the streets of gold; I learned obedience; and I led her father to the Lord in the hospital and followed up for months afterward. Please, don’t even get started about the Lord having some purpose in her untimely death at 30-odd years old. We just lost that one. We’ll do better next time. In the tragedy, God gave comfort, because that’s what He does. In ministry to the sick, may we be bold, compassionate, and obey His leading. Amen.

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