There are times in life that, no matter how healthy you eat, it doesn’t make a difference. For instance, if you break a bone you need a cast. Not just a new way of eating. Even if you are eating enough healthy foods to strengthen your bones, when you strike a bone hard enough it’s going to break.
And if the specialists tell you, it’s the type of break that will cause you pain for the rest of your life, you need a miracle. But what if you don’t really believe in miracles? Can you still receive one? Yes, you can. I know because I did. And this is the story:
“Dear God, I don’t believe in your healing power. Please forgive me, and help my unbelief.”
I wanted to believe. I had heard others tell about healing, but I would always explain it away in my mind. Now I was in my home church on Tuesday, February 4, 1986, listening to a guest evangelist. He asked people to come forward for healing. My left food was in a great deal of pain, but I didn’t go forward, even though I had walked into the meeting with a limp I felt I would be a hypocrite if I did.
Later that night the pain was so bad I couldn’t sleep. The next morning I went to see a podiatrist. He thought I had jammed the dorsal joint. I was given an orthopedic shoe to wear, but after 5 days I could no longer step on my foot. Every time I made the slightest move, it felt like a knife was being jabbed through the ball of my foot.
That week, four different splints were tried before we could find one that would immobilize my foot without causing more pain. The doctors now felt it was more than jammed: possibly torn cartilage, exposed bone, or a fractured sesamoid bone. The pain had gotten so bad it felt like a needle was being jabbed through the ball of my foot.
The doctors recommended that I spend time away from my children, 2 and 3 years old. As usual, our children wanted to hug me and sit on my lap, but any movement of my foot caused the pain to return. How do you tell your little children they cannot show love to their mommy by cuddling with her?
My husband Don was going to a conference for ministers for our denomination. The doctors recommended that I go along with him and rest my leg in the room where we were staying. I was given crutches to use for short distances. We also took a wheelchair so I could attend some sessions with him if I felt well enough.
Pain pills helped me get by. Three days later, I had pain in my ankle and up the back of my leg, and now my right foot had begun to ache as well. I cried; I was afraid. All kinds of thoughts went through my mind: Was the pain going up my leg just from the strain of the splint? What about the pain now in my right foot? Were the doctors wrong? Was it something worse? Bone cancer?
I wanted to get up and walk. I wanted to go home and be with my children. I wanted to remove the splint. I told my husband the previous night: “I feel like my ankle is turning. It hurts. Take the splint off.” He did, and pain like a needle went through the ball of my foot again. We put the splint back on.
Now it was Wednesday, and my ankle still felt like it was turning. Don told me to stop struggling about healing and just look to Jesus. He prayed with me and then left to go to a meeting. I lay back on my pillow and decided to get my mind off of the whole thing. I picked up a book by Anne Ortlund, Children are Wet Cement. In front of me were these verses which God was about to make very real to me: “He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he enables me to stand on the heights. You broaden the path beneath me, so that my ankles do not turn” (Psalm 18:33, 36).
I stared at the phrases, “feet like the feet of a deer” and “ankles do not turn.” It was as though God had written those verses that morning, and He’d written them just for me. I immediately looked in the Bible to make sure they were not just in a book someone had written, but were quoted correctly from Scripture. As I read the verses again, the phrases “Enables me to stand” and “You broaden the path beneath me” stood out boldly.
I knew I was hearing from God through His Word. I began to praise Him. I lifted my hands and voice in worship. His gift of faith was being poured into me. As I read verse 36 again: “You broaden the path beneath me,” I sensed that if I would remove the splint, God would give me the whole floor to walk on.
I noticed my crutches across the room. The wheelchair was by my bed and I thought about getting into it, wheeling myself over to my crutches, and using them to try and put weight on my foot.
Instead, God gently bowed my head to look at the scriptures in front of me once again. I noticed verse 35: “Your right hand sustains me; you stoop down.” God’s Word was telling me He would stoop down to earth for me and His hand would be my crutch. So I removed the splint. No pain. I moved my foot. No pain. Earlier that morning I had been unable to move my foot more than an inch without extreme pain. Now I could move it freely in every direction.
I tried to stand, but pain went through my foot like tiny needles. I didn’t understand. God directed me to read further in the Bible. Verses 37-39 said, “I pursued my enemies and overtook them; I did not turn back until they were destroyed. I crushed them so they could not rise; they fell beneath my feet. You armed me with strength for battle; you made my adversaries bow at my feet.” I claimed that scripture in a prayer. I could feel God’s Spirit within me.
Just then Don came into our room and saw me with my splint off and moving my foot. I told him that I felt God wanted me to walk. He quickly went wet across the hall to get some friends of ours who were attending the same conference and had been praying for me. I shared with them what had happened. Together we continued to praise God.
I explained to Don and our friends the details of how God spoke to me and that I felt He was impressing me to stand. Don said if I felt God wanted me to stand, I should stand. I stood. There was only slight pain. I limped across the room. Then I hobbled across the room. I continued to walk across the room until I began to hop, jump, and leap – on both feet! The four of us broke out into joyous worship.
But God’s working in me did not stop there. That night as Don and I dressed to go to a banquet, I put on my shoes and, one again, I had pain go through y foot. I prayed, “Dear God, I thought You healed me.” Then I remembered verses 37-39 “ I pursued my enemies and overtook them; I did not turn back till they were destroyed. I crushed them so that they could not rise; they fell beneath my feet. You armed me with strength for battle; you made my adversaries bow at my feet.
I felt the Holy Spirit say to me, “Until now the doctors have said do not move your foot, or it will get worse. And they were right. But now, I am telling you to walk, and your foot will get better.”
I began to walk; the pain subsided. Each time the pain tried to return I would walk, and the pain would go away. God had given me faith to stand, and now I was to exercise that faith by “pursuing my enemies and crushing them so they could not rise.”
Upon returning home that Friday, after hugging my children and seeing the surprise on their faces that mommy no longer had crutches, I went to a bone specialist. I didn’t share the whole story with him because I did not want to influence what he said to me. He explained that this type of injury takes 8 – 12 weeks minimum to heal and the pain could last for the rest of my life. He added that it can also ruin an athlete’s career.
I told him it had only been 3 weeks since the pain began. As I explained this to the bone specialist, he said he didn’t understand why things had changed so quickly, but that in this stage of the healing, the best thing I could do was to walk. At that moment I was thankful I had not told him what God had already told me to do: walk and it will get better. Now, it was all confirmed. God Himself had given me “feet like the feet of deer”.
“Dear God, I now believe in Your healing power. Thank You, Lord for speaking to me and helping my unbelief.”
I didn’t receive healing because I believed in the healing power of food. Nor did I receive healing because of my great faith. I received healing because God provided for it through His son Jesus and spoke a very specific word to my heart – which gave me faith.
“Faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ.” (Romans 10:17)
If you need a miracle today, I encourage you to begin reading God’s Word in specific reference to your need. He will speak to you and in His speaking will come the faith to believe.
That of course does not negate our responsibility to eat healthy. And eating healthy does not set aside the miracle working power of God. Instead, they are both given to us by a compassionate God who wants us well. Whether it’s what I experienced in 2004 as “My Food Cure” – or a miracle – both are from God. You may also want to read “Is Food a Cure-All?”
If you have experienced a miracle in your life, I would love to hear your story! Please leave a comment below.
If you need a healing, let me know and I will pray for you right when I read it.
(Scripture quotations are from the New International Version of The Bible.)
Next post: When the Miracle Doesn’t Come.