FAITH AND MEDICINE
As I write today’s Manna column, a young man from our ministry is graduating from college. This young guy’s name is BJ. BJ has been part of one of our churches for several years. His mother is also a Christian and a member of the church. BJ has not always been the best member of the church. Yet there is something in his story that all of us can learn from. BJ’s story helps illustrate a proper balance between faith and medicine or faith and doctors.
It took place some years back, but I still recall the night. I guess it was around 10 pm. Celi and I were in our small apartment located in our main ministry center in a place called Dasmarinas. We were about to go to sleep. All of the sudden we heard some commotion downstairs and, if I recall correctly, there was a knock on our room door. I went to check things out. It was BJ and his mother. He was in great pain and was requesting us to pray for him. It was a very unusual situation.
BJ’s family lived about a 10 minute walk from our ministry center. That evening BJ had begun to have some major stomach issues. The pain became unbearable. His family decided to rush BJ to the emergency room at the hospital! The family didn’t have a vehicle but they were able to rent a small motorcycle with a cart attached to it in order to bring BJ to the hospital. They loaded BJ up in the cart and took off for emergency room! But BJ had an unusual request! He wanted to drop by our ministry center in order for us to pray for him first before he went to the emergency room! What an incredible step of faith! That is exactly what we did. We laid hands on BJ and prayed for him; crying out for God to heal him. After a time of prayer, BJ and family continued on to the hospital. A few hours later, BJ walked out of the emergency room on his own two feet! He ended up not needing any major treatment!
Guess what? This wasn’t the only time that BJ came by our ministry center for prayer on his way to the hospital/emergency room! He came by at least once or twice more. On still other occasions, BJ requested prayer almost any time he had a physical ailment. And, folks, BJ had a lot of physical ailments. Once his appendix burst inside of him! Yet he survived without even having to spend time in the hospital. BJ also had some heart issues. Yet, God brought him through all of that! Now BJ is graduating from college and he is basically fine with his health. He is a testimony to God’s faithfulness and healing power.
What is the principle here for us? Well BJ understood that doctors and medicine are simply instruments of God. God has definitely used doctors and medicine. But BJ didn’t put his faith in those instruments. He wasn’t trusting doctors and medicine for his healing. He put his faith in God. BJ still went to the doctor. At times, he still took medicine. Ultimately, though, he was trusting God to bring healing in whatever way needed. Friends, I think there is a lot for us to learn from BJ’s story. Let us think about it more. Amen!