Jesus is doing incredible things right across our movement as people step out in courage to pray for healing. In this blog, Claire Coggan from the Kings Arms Church in Bedford shares her story of identity, courage, and faith for healing:
Healing is a sign of the Kingdom and we know praying for healing is meant to be part of the normal Christian life for every believer because it’s what Jesus told us to do. He told his disciples, “Heal the sick and say to them the Kingdom of God has come near to you” (Luke 10:9). “As the Father is sending me so also I am sending you” (John 20:21). However, believing it to be true and actually stepping out and praying for people is a challenge! What if nothing happens? What if my prayers are not powerful enough, or what if I leave the person more disappointed? These are all questions that can go through our minds and cause us to step back. Even the disciples sometimes encountered challenge. I used to be afraid to pray for people both inside and outside the church for some of these very reasons, but like everything Jesus told us to do I think He meant it to be a lot simpler than we make it.
The truth is you and I can’t heal anyone, it’s Jesus who heals, and it’s Jesus who lives inside of us. There is plenty of mystery that we navigate along the way as we keep pursuing living the way Jesus has taught us. However, I have become convinced that if we base our theology of healing on our experience so far, instead of on who God is and His promises, we will lower our expectation of what He wants to do through us.
Since 2011 I have been on quite a journey! As I’ve come to understand more of my identity as a daughter and the Father’s love for me, I’ve become more courageous in praying for the sick and introducing people to Jesus. Before, I was often overwhelmed by fear and preoccupied with my performance. Now, I am motivated by God’s love for people knowing when I step out to pray for them the outcome is up to Him. At the start I was often seeing people healed in the church but I longed to see people touched by God outside of the church building, because I knew this is where Jesus had called us to go. Since then, as both individuals and teams have gone out here in Bedford, we have been seeing more people experiencing God’s presence and healing power in places like shops, supermarkets and cafes as well as on the street.
Recently, two ladies came into the coffee shop where we were offering prayer and, noticing one of them was hobbling, we asked if she’d like us to pray for her. She had pain in both her hips and said she was sure we couldn’t do anything as she’d had arthritis for many years. I smiled at her and said, “We can’t, but I believe Jesus can heal you!”. What happened next was truly miraculous…Jesus instantly took all the pain away from her right hip! The lady looked shocked and immediately asked if we could pray for her friend as well. Her friend suffered from severe back pain, and just that morning had decided to stop taking her medication because it was upsetting her stomach. Even though she too doubted anything would happen, she let my friend Tim pray for her after he shared how Jesus had healed him from scoliosis (the same condition which was the cause of her back pain). After praying and asking if there was any change, she began saying, “I’m sure there won’t be” but then interrupted herself as she felt a click in her back and realised all the pain had gone! Wanting us to now pray for her friend’s other painful hip, I suggested that she might like to pray instead and offering to lead her, she laid her hand on her friend’s hip and said, “Jesus please heal my friend and please take her pain away”. Instantly all the pain left! We all looked at each other amazed at what Jesus had just done. Neither of these ladies were Christians, and we then had the joy of talking to them about Jesus, the one who had just healed them, and about His love for them.
It’s always been God’s plan that, as His children, we walk in the supernatural and enjoy the adventure of partnering with Him in the miraculous. It’s what we were made for! I believe God is empowering and releasing the church at this time in a fresh way; He is inviting us to step out with courageous faith and, as we do, He is waiting to give us extraordinary favour as we seek to bring His Kingdom wherever we go. I want to keep being faithful and keep stepping into more of what we all long to see – blind eyes opening, the deaf hearing and cancer leaving people’s bodies. I’m thankful for what I have seen, but hungry to see so much more.
If any of that has stirred you to pray for healing, I would love to invite you to join us for a Healing Conference with Randy Clark at the end of April this year. Randy has been a hero of our community in the area of signs and wonders, seeing God move all over the world through his ministry – find out more about that here
Written by Claire Coggan