Articles and thoughts by Steve Green.
This afternoon as I passed by a church parking lot I saw something that grabbed my attention. The disabled parking spaces had the usual blue signs, but with an additional caption underneath them: soon to be healed.
The signs sparked two thoughts. First, was great joy at the thought that yes, there is a complete and perfect healing ahead for every child of God. For each one of us the sign is true! We are soon to be healed! Healed not only of physical ailments, but as the book of Revelation says, healed of every vestige of sin and every affect of the fall. There will be no more heartache, no more tears, no more pain and no more death.
For my friend, Johnny Farese, who has been afflicted with spinal muscular atrophy since childhood, that means that he will one day soon have a glorified body and not only be able to walk again, but in the coming kingdom be able to physically manifest all the marvelous gifts God has given him. The truth is, those of us who do not need to use the special parking places are also in need of healing. Who is not fractured by the fall? Who does not lament the battle that rages between the flesh and the Spirit? Who among us does not groan, waiting for the coming of our Lord, when the work He began will be perfectly completed?
My second thought was a hope that the message being communicated to our handicapped brothers and sisters is not that they are second class believers in need of something more. On the contrary, it seems that in God’s economy he manifests his strength through weakness and his beauty through brokenness. Could it be that those who have lost much in this life have a more fervent yearning for heaven? Personally, I have learned a great deal from friends who have persevered through lifelong suffering, trusting God’s providence and goodness to sustain them.
Because we are made in the image of God, our souls and bodies are miraculously joined together in one beautiful expression. Our care for each other should include both aspects, the material body and the immaterial soul. Thus, I am encouraged that Christians faithfully pray for the sick and offer practical help to those in need. And, I rejoice in the preaching of the gospel that offers the bright hope, pointing towards that day when all things will be made new.
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