Throughout my life I believed that healing was instantaneous. I thought that when God felt like it, He waved His magic wand and healed people. Like the miracles Jesus and the disciples and prophets did in the Bible. I thought healing was like when the woman touched the garment of Jesus and was immediately healed. Her bleeding stopped. That was healing to me. That is healing sometimes…only I thought that was the only way healing occurred. My belief or unbelief in any other way of healing limited my view of God and his sovereignty and purpose.
Because I believed healing was only immediate, I didn’t have room in my life or beliefs for any other type of healing. I believed God worked but I didn’t equate that to His divine plan for healing. So, I made an assumption, one that would impact the rest of my life. I assumed I wasn’t worthy of healing.
Unworthy of healing didn’t become my mantra. It became a barrier separating me and God. Prayers became pleas. Seeking a lasting relationship became imploring and bargaining with God to just step up this one time and I would forever follow Him daily. When He didn’t, when I didn’t see instantaneous miraculous healing, I didn’t see Him at work at all. No magical change meant no God at work.
My belief in God didn’t change. I knew He was real. Evidence of His creation surrounded me. Examples of Him at work escaped me. I missed Him in the every day. He was only miraculous to me. God became a one note musician. His symphony went on without me.
Because I didn’t see Him in the every day, there had to be a reason He didn’t perform those Biblical magical acts of transformation in my life. I prayed hard enough for change. Baptism didn’t do it. Bible study and church attendance didn’t either. The problem had to be me. My hidden sin, my litany of violations of His commands and of my vows to my wife and family, had to be too much to qualify for healing. I had done too much wrong.
The Bible doesn’t say that. It says things like “all have sinned and fall short” and “if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us.” There is no “except for Keith” in there that I can find.
My wife discovered that I had contacted a previous affair partner after I promised I was in recovery. She warned me if I had acted out with anyone else, especially a friend of hers, we were done and I should just leave. I fully disclosed my complete sexual history, including acting out with that friend of hers, seven weeks later. I expected her to keep her promise and leave. She didn’t.
Our marriage continues to grow and heal gradually, not in the way I believed the only way for healing to occur. Healing for us and our marriage progresses slowly, a day at a time. My friend Corey told me that I didn’t see God at work in the small stuff, the daily stuff. He spoke truth. God works in all the stuff, big and small. In my life, in this moment, healing is a process.