“My God is so big, so strong and so mighty, there’s nothing that he cannot do.”
We sing this song, we teach our children to sing this song, but do we really believe it? On the mission field it is not uncommon to frequently observe many miracles, yet at home in England I have heard many people say things such as “I believe in miracles, but not for me” or “God never answers my prayers”. Someone only last week asked me why this disparity between missions and home seems to occur. Could anyone confidently know the answer to this? Do we need to know or just accept it?
I went on a mission trip last year to northeast India for several weeks and God’s immense power and might were on display throughout. We held huge outdoor crusade meetings, reaching up to 15,000 people on the last night. After receiving a word of knowledge, the leader of our team would call forward certain groups of people onto the stage to receive prayer. One boy, previously deaf and dumb, was able to hear and to start making sounds for the first time in his life. One night around 10-20 people reported that their tumors had disappeared, shrunk or massively changed. The miracles were countless; deaf ears opened, kidney stones gone, the lame walking, etc.
We would then go and pray for people in the crowds. The first person I prayed for was partially sighted. The look of absolute delight and wonder that spread over his face as he opened his eyes and could see the stage properly for the first time was the highlight of the trip for me. We did not need an interpreter to tell us how much better it was! Hearing and breathing improved, a paralyzed arm started to move, pain disappeared and fear and anxiety left. The people’s eyes were filled with tears, so grateful and full of faith and joy, and on the last night, for as far as I could see, all of many thousands of them stood to give their life to Jesus.
I even saw miracles when I was on my own! One day in Gangtok, having bolted myself in my hotel room, I went to have a shower and closed the bathroom door for the first time. Within a couple of minutes, the water was freezing and flooded the bathroom! Not wanting to be in a freezing cold bathroom with soaking wet hair and a streaming cold, I went to leave. It turned out the door did not open from the inside! No amount of jangling the handle was going to work, the physics of it was impossible and I would never get enough leverage to open the door! The situation seemed so impossible I started to laugh. No one would hear me banging on the door and no one was going to notice I was missing for over an hour, possibly the whole day! I was likely to have been stuck in there for hours. The only way I was getting out of there in less than a couple of hours was with God. I spoke to the door, “In the name of Jesus, I command you to open!”. It opened straight away! In that moment I have never been more grateful to God! There was no opening that door! It did not work; beforehand or afterward, yet He got me out of there and to our church meeting!
I have seen miracles outside of the mission field but they have tended to be less frequent! “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8), and in different continents! One difference I have noticed between locations is varying degrees of levels of faith and expectancy.
In India, many people had never even heard of Jesus before. They had no preconceptions of Him. They simply saw someone on the stage receive healing and completely believed that if we prayed for them, they would get better. Consequently, that tended to be what happened! I know at home I have heard many people say, “I’ve prayed lots of times but nothing has happened so what’s the point of praying again?”, “I don’t deserve to be healed” or “God allowed [an event] to happen so I no longer believe that He is good”. Their preconceptions of God, themselves and their levels of faith are totally different to those we prayed for in India.
These reactions are understandable and I am not drawing a direct link; it is just an observation I have made! It is always good to remind ourselves that God is always good, we are worth everything to Him and to never give up praying!
Since returning from India, I have had more faith when I have prayed and noticed my Mum seemed to have more faith when I prayed too. My increased levels of faith were due to seeing all of the miracles that happened with Jesus when I prayed. I now believe if I pray, something will happen because I have seen it. This increased faith unknowingly led me to pray with more authority and it is with this increased authority with which I prayed that increased my Mum’s levels of faith. Consequently, I believe we have seen more answers to prayer in our house for day-to-day issues and illnesses.
So let us speak with increased faith, authority and expectation to the doors and mountains in our lives and see God’s mighty power at work, believing that something will happen!
Written by: Caroline Harvey
Published on 8/11/2017