Moving into Greater Faith

faith imageHow did I get here? I asked myself. This is not the time to be introspective and reflective, Taylor.
Taming my wandering thoughts, I felt the blistering Mexican heat wash over me once again as the tropical humidity wrapped me up like a wet sleeping bag. Staring off into a grove of lush plantain trees, I blinked to clear my thoughts and focus again on the man sitting across from me.

His dusty sandals fraying at the seams, his pants and shirt were tattered khaki and pale blue. His attire was typical of the impoverished native farmers living in the mountains surrounding the town of Axtla de Terrazas, San Luis Potosi, Mexico.

More striking than his clothes, of course, were the tears darkening his tanned face, running down the deeply etched wrinkles around his eyes. Nearly ten minutes earlier, this man had sat down before me and my bi-lingual prayer-partner, Omar. He sought prayer because he was blind.

After praying for a short time, I felt the Holy Spirit impress upon me to make mud with my spit and to apply it to his eyes, not unlike the account of Jesus in Mark chapter 8. I thought it would be advisable to follow the example of the Healer when it comes to healing ministry.

I began to obey without any hesitation. As quickly as I had bent over to the dirt to spit, so did my translator (God had impressed the same instruction to both of us at the same time and we both immediately followed God’s leading). We each made a little mud and applied it to this man’s eyes and instantly, he could see! He began to weep and praise God for restoring his sight. What was more, he was the fifth person with blindness that I had personally seen God heal in the span of three days! (Side note: God did not direct me to use saliva and mud when praying for others with blindness—only this man).

The Short Leg

What eventually led me to the beautiful people of Mexico that summer begins with another story that took place four years earlier. I was sixteen and leading a youth group at a small church in rural Colorado with my older brother, Seth.

At our service one night, my brother had just finished teaching a short message on healing when one student, Jimmy, told us that he had chronic pain in his lower back. His doctor told him it was because he had one leg shorter than the other. Without missing a beat, Seth told Jimmy to sit down in a chair and to stick his feet out. Jimmy followed Seth’s instructions and Seth measured his leg, seeing that one leg was indeed nearly one inch shorter than the other. With an ornery grin, Seth enthusiastically asked Jimmy if he would like to see the short leg grow out to match his normal one.

My heart sank into my stomach and my mind went into shock. At this point in my life, I was passionate for God, believed in healing, and had even been miraculously healed, but I did not believe that God would heal anyone when I prayed, or even when my brother prayed. (Later, I found out that my brother was having the same doubts that I was having; he told me that he felt no faith, but was convicted to practice what he preached).

Panicking and wanting to save the three of us from experiencing an awkward situation, I tried to stop my brother from praying, but it was no use. Like trying to stop a charging rhino with a pellet gun, I could only sputter unintelligible syllables that vaguely seemed to resemble real words—and this did nothing to slow Seth down.

“In the name of Jesus, I command this leg to grow!” My brother thundered. For a moment, I shook with chills as I watched Jimmy’s leg immediately shoot out half of an inch. Jimmy shouted, dumbfounded; my brother, speechless. The leg stopped halfway, not growing fully out.

Oddly enough, this partial miracle did not cause my faith to rise up. In fact, I was confused, embarrassed and even angry. Look at the mess you got us into now, Seth! How are we going to explain this?! Even though I still had no faith that Jimmy’s leg would lengthen if I prayed, I felt pressure boiling up within me to say something. Anything.

My brother prayed again, but nothing happened. My anxiety levels were skyrocketing.
Words left my mouth before they had even entered my mind. With faith smaller than a mustard seed and unbelief as large as a mountain, I shouted, “Leg, you grow out the rest of the way, RIGHT NOW!”

Before I could even say “Amen”, Jimmy’s short leg immediately grew out the remaining half-inch to match his other leg! Jimmy shouted again. I gasped. Seth slumped back in his chair with a sigh. I don’t know for how long the three of us sat in total silence. And to be honest, I don’t remember much else from that night. I was in shock. We had just seen God do the impossible amongst us undeserving teenagers in some teeny, country church in the middle of nowhere in Colorado. I had so many questions; the first and foremost was, why did God answer my prayer when I felt no faith?

God took the liberty of healing Jimmy of all his infirmities in that moment. We later found out that Jimmy had also been healed of a minor heart condition as well as a hand that was smaller than the other—both conditions of which we were unaware when we prayed for his short leg.

That night changed me for forever. It began a process in me that has led to seeing many sick healed and captives set free.

The Divine Formula for Healing

For most of my life, I believed that I wasn’t “good enough” or had enough faith to pray for the sick and so I never did. I used to erroneously believe, whether consciously or subconsciously, that God would heal as a result of completing some spiritual formula: if you start with a sick person (preferably a saint, but an “ordinary” church-attending Christian will do), you add an anointed, faith-filled healing evangelist, a dash of compassion, a loud prayer and when the choir sings “Great is Thy Faithfulness” just right…that would complete the formula for healing! You would receive your miracle.

My entire worldview shifted when God performed such a miracle despite my doubt and stark lack of a choir. While God always desires for us to walk in radical faith, I have to point out that God still healed Jimmy that night even though we did not complete any equation for healing.

When God healed Jimmy, I began to learn that His faithfulness is always greater than my unbelief (see Romans 3:3,4; Mark 9:23-25). Something that I have seen time and time again is that God’s formula for healing is simply this, “…I am the Lord who heals you.” (Ex. 15:26). We know that Jesus perfectly expressed the will of the Father and the Bible says of him that He went about doing good and healing ALL who were oppressed by the Devil (Acts 10:38). He heals because He is the healer. End of discussion.

I no longer saw God as a cold-hearted taskmaster, but as an immediate, available, intimate and loving Father. I began to understand that He is good because He is good, not because we deserve it. He is faithful because He is faithful, not because of our devotion. I no longer thought healing was about fulfilling a set of requirements, but came to understand that it is entirely about the Father expressing His heart of love to hurting people who are desperately in need of a Father as good as Him.

I began to have an expectation that anything can happen. I would imagine God healing every sick person I saw because He healed Jimmy when none of us believed He would! I began to read the word and stand on the promises of God in scripture concerning not just healing, but concerning His providence, my identity as a new creation in Christ, my value as His son, and my calling to live like Jesus. Even nowadays, if I pray for someone and see nothing happen, I cannot be shaken from this conviction: nothing is impossible with God.

See, when God chose to heal Jimmy in spite of our weakness, it brought about far more than a single miracle. It transformed me into an entirely different man. I went from being surprised if something happened to being surprised if something didn’t. This is how I ended up smearing mud on the eyes of a blind man in Mexico: God revealed to me a greater reality than my doubt and unbelief. Even if I feel no faith, I am convinced that the reality is that He is the healer and nothing is impossible for Him.

I think God is far less interested in making us fulfill some formula as He is interested in transforming us by using whatever obedience we are willing to offer.

In the midst of this process, I began to attend CHCP, eventually becoming certified as a Physical Healing Specialist. The program gave me many useful ministry tools, a wealth of biblical understanding and most importantly, it added fuel to my fire as I received impartation and invaluable mentoring from the wonderful facilitators. If you feel God is leading you to healing ministry, I would highly suggest you consider taking one of the classes.

Perhaps, today, you find yourself battling doubt, discouragement, and disillusionment like I was. Maybe you have been seeking God for a miracle and have yet to receive it. Possibly, you desire to be used by God to heal the sick, but aren’t sure where to begin or even if God would use you. Wherever you find yourself today, God wants to meet you there.

The bottom line is that God loves to love us. He loves to work in us and through us throughout the entire process of our becoming like Christ. He isn’t looking for perfection; He is looking for willing hearts. I would encourage you to simply step out and pray. God is looking for people to carry His heart because the world is in desperate need of Him. We, as Christians, carry the life of Christ because He lives inside of us.

Will you be willing to risk awkwardness, embarrassment, and disappointment? Trust me; it’s worth it.


About the Author

taylor hendrickson Taylor Hendrickson is a speaker, writer, musician and artist. He began preaching at the age of 14 in 2008 and in the years since, he and his older brother Seth have traveled to speak at different churches throughout Northern Colorado and Southern Nebraska. They have also cofounded and led youth ministries, often leading worship and preaching.

He currently teaches and leads worship at The Belonging, a College and Young Adult ministry in Thornton, Colorado that he helps lead. Additionally, he is the Prayer Team Director and lead guitarist for Love on Fire Worship, a parachurch ministry that hosts Northern Colorado Worship and Prayer Nights. These events are aimed to promote unity among Christians of all backgrounds and traditions by hosting monthly times of worship with corporate prayer for unity, salvations, and revival in the region.
He is also a Physical Healing Specialist through CHCP.

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