Back in the 1970s, I had the opportunity of traveling with an older minister. I went with him to 15 different churches, and at each place, there would be women wanting him to pray for them for something to do with pregnancy. Although the minister never mentioned it during a sermon or gave an opportunity for women to give testimony, people told me in each place stories of women being healed and having healthy babies because of his ministry. They said he had a gift. After that, for many years, I would send women with difficult pregnancies to him for prayer; in every case, they were healed. Since then, I’ve been able to minister with others who consistently succeed in various prayer areas.
I questioned as many of these ministers as I could find on how this gift came and what it was like initially. I discovered some common elements. First, they routinely prayed for many people before their ministry became so successful. Most were pastors who gave an invitation to those who wanted prayer at the end of every meeting. Most even had home meetings in addition to their regular services, finding people more open about their difficulties in the home environment.
Secondly, many said at first, they would feel some manifestation such as heat or tingling in their hand. For some, this would continue, but for others, that manifestation would go away even though their prayers continued to find favor with the Lord.
Thirdly, they told me that when someone would come and ask for prayer in those particular areas, they would immediately sense faith even before they prayed. When they told me this, I wondered if this was a case of the Fruit of the Spirit faith. Putting the proper label on things, such as gifts versus fruits, isn’t all that important when the Lord shows up.
It strikes me that what is important is that we do the things of the Lord, such as prayer, loving our neighbor, accepting people just as they are, and so on, as often as we can and as much as we can. In that way, we will be slowly changed each day into the person God wants us to be. If we are willing, The Lord will give us the necessary quantity of people to practice our faith on.
Photo by Ksenia Chernaya
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