Last week, I attended a Bethel Healing Rooms meeting for students interested in being part of the ministry teams. I expected to hear a reiteration of Bethel’s main core values when it comes to healing , e.g. healing is the right of every believer, God wants to heal you (it’s not about what you’ve done but what He’s already done), and, of course, nothing is impossible for God.
Indeed, they covered all those bases, but they also touched on a topic that I thought was very interesting. I have heard them teach about this before but never expounded in as clear a way as they did that day.
The issue that I’m talking about is the issue of forgiveness (or dealing with unforgiveness) as a prerequisite to healing.
I don’t necessarily agree or disagree with either side of this issue. I’ve heard many testimonies of people being healed after they were willing to repent of their unforgiveness. I just want to share Bethel’s perspective on the matter, and I think they have a really good point.
At Bethel, they specifically instruct their healing teams NOT to ask the person they’re praying for if they have any unforgiveness that might be preventing them from being healed.
The reason for that is based on this fundamental rule: Don’t project your powerlessness on the person you’re praying for. When we feel powerless, we feel the need to shift the “blame” of the situation–from ourselves (being unable to heal the person) to the person’s unforgiveness as the reason they have not been healed.
The fact of the matter is, it’s not about our ability to heal them in the first place. It is God’s. If the person is not being healed, we do not have to make up a reason for their lack of healing. As Bill Johnson puts it:
“Guard yourself from creating theologies around disappointment and unanswered prayers, to insulate yourself from the pain.”
Many times in Church history, Christians have felt the need to create theologies around their experiences of “no breakthrough” and disappointment (thus, the doctrine of cessationism was created).
If someone is not healed after you pray for them many times, just step back and say, “Okay, I quit. Holy Spirit, what are you doing here?” Don’t strive. Give it to the Lord and continue believing that He is the Healer. This is the tension of faith that we must be willing to live with as believers.
Now, let’s take a look at the ultimate example for healing ministry in the Bible–Jesus. No where in the Bible does Jesus tell someone to sort out their issues before he healed them. That’s an eye-opener, isn’t it? The truth is, unforgiveness can prevent someone from being healed… but it doesn’t prevent us from healing them, because, remember, it’s not about what they have done but what God has done for them that counts.
Faith has a voice, and it’s voice is never condemning. It always releases life.
Finally, the key to healing is focusing on JESUS, not focusing on our problems. Therefore, it’s not a good idea to get the person you’re praying for to become “introspective” (that includes, breaking generational curses). We don’t want them to focus on inside them but to focus on the Answer, because the Answer is always greater than the problem, just as light is always stronger than darkness. And as we all know, darkness is just the absence of light.