While I’ve ALWAYS believed that God will heal my knees, constantly seeing others healed – which is an incredible, indescribable delight and privilege – can ‘chip away’ at the ‘when is it my turn, Lord?’ thought process. And when successive medics all say the same thing, it’s hard to stand alone against the pressure to ‘go on the list’ for surgery. One orthopaedic consultant told me mine were so bad, she gave me her personal mobile phone number, said ‘call me when you can’t take anymore, and I’ll put you at the top of my list’. Ireland’s a bit different to England, in that respect! MANY times the ‘temptation’ has been there… The doctor I saw here on arrival looked at the x-rays of these knees, and said, ‘You only have one course of action, Paul: we can do both, you’ll be back walking normally in 6-8 weeks, and it’ll only be US$7000’…
When I pray for people for healing or a miracle, I look for a ‘deadline’ – a near-doctors appointment, a surgery date, a consultant visit…. deadlines are good, as there’s something ‘concrete’ to pin a healing ‘time-frame’ to: nothing nebulous and unknown vaguely somewhere in the future.
Here in Cali, Colombia – which I DO regard as a genuine home, spiritual and otherwise (Home is where your heart is, and all that!), I’ve always been blessed to be ‘wanted’ back: 21 years coming to Colombia, 20 to Cali (this is my 79th time here), but this trip has seen a real acceleration in my being ‘honoured’ for being here, welcomed in many churches as ‘my home’, ‘part of our family in this church’ – which I have to say I find so incredibly humbling. I’ve been in tears many times this week. These are ‘key’ pastors in the move of God in this city and nation, and it totally blows me away….
Danny Silk, from Redding, California, wrote a wonderful book on ‘The Culture of Honour’: personally, I love to honour people, build them up, drop them into things they think they can’t do, run with them while they do it. Many years ago, my friends and mentors Clive and Ruth Calver did that for me in my early years of salvation and ministry, and it rubbed off on me (including my introduction to Indian food, with Clive: he started me OFF on a vindaloo…..). Honouring others is NOT just words: it’s a lifestyle, it releases incredible waves of God’s blessing and power into the person being honoured, so that THEY believe they can do what they couldn’t do – and do it. And it brings healing. And immense blessing to the ‘honourer’…..
10 days ago, the lovely church, Mision El Abrigo Internacional, in my spirit my ‘home’ church, even from 6,000 miles/10,000 kms away, spontaneously got round me as a church, and prayed for me. I felt humbled and blessed, but didn’t feel anything physical, nor at all that Sunday, or even Monday. Still in pain, walking has been an ‘issue’! Then, the prayers kicked in. If you want to see them, they’re not long – about 3 minute and 1½ minutes, they’re here:
- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aOK-r5QYqPw&t=6s (you’ll probably need to copy and paste into your browser)
By Tuesday, having thanked God every conceivable moment I could, for the prayers, affirmations, and the miracle that ‘I’d believed but had not yet received’, the change was dramatic. I COULD WALK!! I could bend my knees. I couldn’t quite keep up walking with Thanney, as he’s got long legs, and I have little trotters, but I wasn’t far behind. Yes, there’s still soreness: but it’s diminishing. Yes, the bones still crack, but a lot less, and nowhere near so excruciating. I’m ‘taking care’ of them – looking out for ‘unseen’ steps, dips in the pavement, taking stairs slowly – not step-step, though, both feet on one stair – I can do stairs like normal people right now!
THANK YOU, LORD JESUS!! I want to declare it – rather than ‘give it a few weeks to see if I keep it’ – which I believe is the quickest to LOSE it. The man at the gate of the temple, in Acts 3, didn’t slink away quietly into the background, after his 38 years, saying, ‘Let’s give it a month, see if I can walk, leap, and dance then….!’ – he took off. So thank you, Jesus, for this miracle I’m living in right now – still ongoing, but it IS just that – ongoing. I can actually SEE the shape of my kneecaps now – the swelling has begun to go down… might not sound much to you, but to be able to get out of a chair, stand up, and walk away – without using the chair to get up, standing still for about minute, to let the pain subside and get balance, and then hobbling away – is a joy!!
I don’t plan on entering the London Marathon in a few weeks, not this year anyway…. but this is the answer to hundreds of my prayers, and countless of those of other people….
Thank you, thank you, Lord Jesus!!!