Two and a half weeks ago, I was involved in a car accident. To say God protected me and my son who was with me is an understatement. We knew from the moment we saw the damage to the car, repairing it was impractical. The insurance company didn’t take much time to come to the same conclusion.
We all walked away from the accident with relatively minor injuries. Well, my son limped away, but you get the point. The impact was violent, and the damage to both vehicles extreme. But the cars performed precisely how their engineers designed them to. My beautiful Dodge Charger folded where he was meant to fold, remained solid where he was meant to stand fast, and deployed almost every airbag installed within him to cushion us as well as he could. We were injured yes, but we are healing.
All of this got my mind swirling around an idea that had already been stirring. Have you ever considered the difference between healed and cured? I wonder if perhaps there’s more there than any of us usually think about. Take a journey with me . . .
Healed and Cured, Not Even Close
One problem I have with faith-healing is that it tends to be focused only on the physical aspect of healing. But Jesus always backed away when people came to him only to get their physical needs met. My goodness, he was ready to have you lop off your hand! His real interest was in healing the soul. ~Joni Eareckson Tada, Christian author and radio host
Recently, I watched a television rerun of a popular drama that aired for seven seasons on one of the prime networks in America. One of the characters is a recovering drug addict, and at this point in the show, if I am remembering correctly, about two years sober. Instead of celebrating his progress, he’s irritated because he always thought that the farther along recovery he made it, the less the drugs would call to him. Yet, while he gets up every day and successfully fights the urge to use, he still has to get up every day and battle the desire.
This is when a thought popped into my head.
Healing, not cured.
I think many of us can relate to this. At present, I am dealing with a broken finger from the accident. My pinkie finger. On my dominant hand. It’s not particularly painful, but it gets in the way of almost everything. My writing, which was just picking back up after a 7-month sabbatical is hindered. I can’t type for long periods of time before my hand begins to ache and my finger throb. And my handwriting is even worse, appearing much like a second grader still learning to smooth out the flow.
I can’t open juice bottles or cans with pop-top lids, struggle to fold clothes, and am learning how to let my left hand take charge or do things like move laundry from the washer to the dryer entirely on its own. Oh, and the flash of pain when my sixty-pound retriever accidentally hits my splint in her burst of youthful exuberance.
Add to that an injury to my sternum from the seatbelt, and life gets quite . . . well, let’s just say that I must take things slow. I can’t lift anything of much weight because the muscles around my sternum hurt, and normal activities like pushing a grocery cart strain my endurance. Last time I tried, multiple people stopped me to ask if I was okay. Thank goodness for Covid-19 encouraging stores to do online ordering and curbside pickup!
I am healing. But still have a ways to go.
Healed, not cured.
Others come to mind that may fit this description of healed but not yet cured. What about Joni Eareckson Tada? She was injured in a diving accident many years ago and lives with paralysis, yet she ministers to people around the world with a message of hope and love. I think she would agree that her spirit and emotions are healed, while her body waits for a cure.
What about those like the television character I mention above that struggle with something that they know God wants them to walk away from. They may succeed today, not succumbing to the temptation, but they know tomorrow will still be a battle.
Even my finger may never recover to the full range of motion that it had before. I just had surgery on it yesterday to place pins in to help hold the bone together while it heals, but the location of the break and the presence of pins, even on a temporary basis, means the future may bring with it other complications such as osteoarthritis. Healed, but not cured.
One Day Healed and Cured
But that doesn’t mean we will forever live with our present pains. Christians have the great hope that one day they will not be merely healed but also completely cured. Unhealthy addictions will no longer be a problem. Those with limitations will have fullness. Our entire selves will be whole and ready for eternal service in Heaven. What a glorious thought!
And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” Revelation 21:3
Thankfully, forgiveness, and the healing it brings in its wake, has nothing to do with ‘deserve.’ ~Eric Metaxas, Christian author and radio host
And the best part of both healed and cured? We don’t have to do anything for it but trust Christ and obey God. We don’t deserve it, but as a loving Father, God cannot wait to bestow it upon us.
If you don’t know my story, then you may not understand the depth of my heart as I encourage you to hope for our wholeness in heaven. In my book, Living in the Shadow of Death, I go into more detail about the difficulties we faced with my husband’s medical issues, and the journey of emotional and spiritual healing that I braved until I could honestly say that God is always good.
Does God have a purpose for the turmoil or tragedy you are experiencing?
Does a good God allow loss and send pain? How can that lurking feeling of dread for tomorrow be part of abundant life with Christ?
Grief hits us unexpectedly. A job loss, a failed relationship, a health crisis, an unexpected move, a rebellious teen, and other difficult circumstances force themselves upon us, demanding our attention. Fear, insecurity, and loneliness intimidate us into quiet submission and attempt to dictate our choices.
But what if we could shove them out our front door?
With loving concern and unyielding devotion for those facing a loss they never imagined, Carrie opens up her heart to reveal the biblical truths she’s learned through the heart-wrenching turbulence in her own life. She answers questions many Christians struggle with but dare not admit:
•Is God really good?
•Does the presence of pain and loss cancel out the abundant life promised to us?
•How can we follow God when life seems to only bring heartache?
•Is He even trustworthy?
If these are your questions, take heart! Within these pages, Carrie shares some of her very unchristian-like doubts and how she developed an intense faith and abiding trust even while Living in the Shadow of Death.