And the angel said unto them, "Fear not, for behold I bring you good tidings
of great joy, which shall be to all people."
Mike was a well-known banjo player and country music artist living with his wife, Brenda, in Nashville, Tennessee. One day, after mowing the lawn and receiving a few scratches in the process, he noticed spots appearing on his skin. He thought nothing of it and showed his wife. However, the spots were getting worse and even spread to his tongue, so she decided to take him to the hospital. The doctors there discovered that his platelet count had dropped to a dangerously low 175 while normal platelet count levels are between 150,000 to 550,000. Additionally, people whose levels drop below 2,000 usually do not survive. He was at risk of bleeding to death internally and it was shocking that he was still alive. He received a blood transfusion that kept him alive, but they could not determine the cause of his condition. His wife called for prayer support from family and friends, specifically those that she was confident were serious about prayer. His platelet count returned to normal, however, doctors were still not sure what had caused the drop in platelet levels or even what had caused the count to increase and go back to normal. Mike and his wife were concerned because they did not know if it would happen again. Unfortunately, a few months later, his hand was injured and he received fifty stitches. He resorted to taking anti-inflammatory medication to ease the pain and immediately he saw the same spots he had witnessed some months earlier. As his wife put it, fear hit her strong, in fact, it hit her before faith did but, she cried out to God and reminded Him that He had healed him before and asked Him to do it again. She then called for prayer support and her faith increased. Mike too reminded God that He had done it before and He could do it again. He told God that this situation was His! Blood tests revealed that both experiences were due to an allergic reaction to “lodine” found in the anti-inflammatory medication he had taken. Now he knew the cause and now he could prevent the same problem from ever happening again.
One of the things that catches my attention with this story is the reality of the fear they faced. His wife said that fear hit her hard because the same problem surfaced a second time. Fear is real! Sometimes, no matter how much we try to have faith in the midst of our situation, fear feels way bigger than the faith we are supposed to have as children of God. We know what the Bible says about fear, that it is not from God, yet, it is a real force that seems to engulf us at times and render us almost paralyzed. The interesting thing is that she saw God do a miracle the first time but when the problem popped up again, her faith took a terrible hit. That’s the reality of life sometimes. No matter how much we want to trust God, the situation is so real, so palpable, that we struggle to believe that God can do it a second time.
Yet, this is what both she and her husband prayed for. They wanted God to heal him again. Their story reminds me of the Israelites (Exodus 14). God had delivered them out of the land of Egypt after sending many plagues against the Egyptians. Pharaoh finally agreed to release them. Not long after, however, Pharaoh changed his mind again and decided to go after them to recapture them. Imagine the fear the Israelites must have felt to see their enemies coming after them when they thought they had finally been set free! And, to make matters worse, there was nowhere to run because there was a huge body of water in front of them – the Red Sea – as well as territory that was difficult to navigate on either side of them. They were trapped. Yet, God had delivered them before and He would do it again even though many more odds seem stacked against them!
Note that the second time around, God revealed to Mike’s doctors the source of the problem so that he was able to prevent it from ever happening again. Similarly, the second time around, God didn’t just deliver His people out the hands of their enemies but He completely destroyed them so that they would NEVER be able to come after them to put them in bondage again. God knows exactly what He is doing. What looks like a problem, as if God did not do a good job the first time, is sometimes God simply setting things up to rid us of the problem completely. In the process, He also increases our faith by performing even greater miracles than He did the first time! You just can’t figure God out! He will do what is best ... HIS way!
If you have not accepted Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Saviour, I encourage you to make that step now. Jesus died so that we could be set free from every bondage and attack that may come our way. When we commit our very lives to Him, He is obligated to take care of us and to see us through life’s challenges again and again and again!
This blog provides inspirational nuggets inspired by the Word of God and serves to encourage and motivate Christians in their Christian walk.