Monday, March 19, 2018

Write so Heaven will be Different

By Patty Hall

I hit a hiccup in my writing journey recently. For the first time in over twenty years, I had no desire to write, no new ideas to work on, no bits and pieces of scenes playing out in my head. My family and friends blamed it on my aggressive writing schedule and a recent bout of flu that had left me sick for almost two months.

But I’m not that easy on myself. There had not been a day in the last twenty years that I haven’t woken up with this overwhelming urge to write something. So what was wrong with me now? Was God trying to tell me my writing ministry was over?

Whenever I have doubts about my writing, I pick up two books of my favorites when I struggle with my writing—the Bible and Marlene Bagnull’s Bible study for writers, Write His Answer. But this time, after breezing through the first few chapters, I still was no closer to an answer than I was before.

Then I came to the chapter called Learning to Wait. While reading through it, I came across a challenge from Lee Roddy that cut me to the quick—Write so heaven will be different. Those words haunted me even after I put the book away. Wasn’t that what I was doing? Or had I pushed God aside in my effort to make the next deadline or work on a new proposal? Was I truly writing so that people would want to know the Lord?

I thought about what my writing was like early in my ministry. Even if I only got to sit down at my computer for a couple of hours, I rose refreshed and at peace, as if I’d been in a private conversation between me and the Lord. It was a time when I stood in awe as God used an inferior vessel like me to write extraordinary things!

Now, my writing has become a job with meeting deadlines, the endless marketing, and the business of publishing. A delicate balance was needed with God always the focus of every word I put to paper.

No wonder I had no desire to write. When I realized my mistake, I asked God for forgiveness and put Him at the center of my writing where He belonged. I spent time in prayer and reading my Bible.

And I’m itching to write again!

Are you struggling to write? Are you ‘writing so that heaven will be different?’ Make God the focal point of your writing today and every day!


A multi-published author with Love Inspired Historical and Barbour, Patty lives in North Georgia with her husband of 35 years, Danny; two gorgeous daughters, her son-in-love and a grandboy who has her wrapped around his tiny finger. When she’s not writing on her back porch, she’s spending time with her family or working in her garden.

Friday, March 9, 2018


By Debbie Beck

As told to Ada Nicholson Brownell
Excerpt from the new book, What Prayer Can Do

As a child I cried when I heard the story of the Crucifixion. It seemed so sad that the Lord Jesus Christ should be tortured to death!

In the church I attended they did not explain to me why He died. They did not teach what the Bible says about the day of salvation.

I accepted Christ and was baptized, but only because that’s what the rest of the Sunday school kids did. It had no special meaning for me.

But I had a longing for spiritual life as I grew older, I experimented with many weird things. I started with the Ouija board and took the route of witchcraft, tarot cards, fortune-tellers, trances, parapsychology, and mind control.

 I searched for answers to life’s mysteries. I hungered for God, and I was ready to try anything I could find that pertained to the supernatural.

But none of these satisfied. They increased my emptiness.

I did discover there is supernatural power in the occult, but it was Satan’s power, not God’s. I have felt Satan’s heavy presence. I dressed in black and went to so-called “haunted houses” for séances. It was not all fake. I communicated with the spirit world. I’ve seen spirits take form in front of my eyes. But this only gave me fear—not peace. It did nothing for the emptiness I felt inside.

A fortune teller said I would die in a car accident at a certain time and place. The accident happened. The circumstances were almost the same as predicted—only I wasn’t there. I avoided going to the place at that time and escaped death.

What I was doing was fascinating, but it didn’t bring me the peace and joy I craved. It only made me afraid. Fear seemed to predominate the spirit world in which I found myself...
Read the rest of the story in Ada Brownell's book, What Prayer Can Do 
Buy What Prayer Can Do here

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

The Amazing Power of Prayer


Without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who diligently seek him” (Hebrews 11:6 NIV).

But why do some miracles not come?

Ada Nicholson Brownell’s new Book: What Prayer Can Do


Newsmax Health says a specific amount of “prayer time” per day can help prevent memory loss, mental decline, and even dementia or Alzheimer’s.

The organization points to 47 “scientifically proven” benefits of prayer, including pain relief, reduced risk of death from heart attack or stroke, lessened anxiety or depression, and more.

But broken marriages and messed-up lives changed for the better in a moment? A blind man instantly able to see? A forest fire redirected? Rain held at bay? A child healed of leukemia? A child with an undeveloped brain and hydrocephalus suddenly normal? The meanest man in town changed into a loving person and an evangelist by an encounter with God?

I’ve heard testimonies of answers to prayer all my life, and I just mentioned some of them. I’ve known people who, like me, have experienced the miraculous. I’ve written testimonies about miracles for nearly sixty years, and most were documented.

Miracles still occur in the 21st Century, and it’s happened in our family.

Go to church and ask people you meet, “What is the greatest answer to prayer you’ve ever received?” You’ll be amazed. I’ve had many answers to prayer in my own life and they’re still occurring.

But what about those whose prayer for a miracle isn’t answered the way the person on his knees had hoped?

By reading the Bible we learn not every hoped-for miracle happens. Despite knowing Jesus is our healer, that God is the rewarder of those who diligently seek Him, our hearts were broken when we lost our oldest daughter to cancer when she was age 31. We still miss her! 

Yet, I know God loves us. Jesus gave His life so every one of us who believes in Him will live forever, but our human bodies are destined to die some time. Yet Jesus said those who believe in Him will never die (John 11:26). Yes! Our spirits are immediately in heaven, like the thief on the cross was with Jesus that day in Paradise, and Stephen the martyr was immediately there to see our Savior at the right of the Father.

God did give us a miracle, however, in the amazing peace and comfort He gave despite our loss. How can I explain peace despite our prayer for Carolyn’s healing unanswered while many other prayers result in miracles? Here are a few things I learned from scripture.

  1.  I accept the truths in the Bible by faith. Faith is a decision. Yet, we don’t know the reason why some miracles don’t happen, but we know healing is in the atonement. The stripes on Jesus’ back were for our healing. (1 Peter 2:24).
  2. An atmosphere of doubt interferes with God’s Spirit working among us. Jesus Himself couldn’t do many miracles in Nazareth because of a spirit of unbelief (Matthew 13:57-58).

3.     What our mind feeds on affects our personal faith. (Romans 10:17).

4.      We have a drought of God’s power because we don’t seek the Gifts of healing, faith and miracles. God gives the Gifts to those for whom He has a specific purpose but He also tells us to ask for them (1 Corinthians 12).

  1. Lack of fasting and prayer affects spiritual outcomes. (Mark 9:28,

6.     Although we know our sin doesn’t cause most sicknesses, sin could cause us to be sick or even die. (1 Corinthians 11:29--31). When, however, some people witnessed the healing of a blind man and asked who sinned, the man or his parents, Jesus said, “Neither, so that the works of God might be displayed in him” (John 9:1-3).

7.      Some people aren’t healed or delivered because of “the greater good, as the preceding scripture states. When our oldest daughter was near death from cancer she left a witness. Four people gave their lives to Christ and others recommitted themselves to God.

  1. Often God uses faith and works and we should give Him credit for these miracles, because he gives wisdom and knowledge for health care. James said, “Faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead” James 2:14-16).

9.  Sometimes healing doesn’t come because we’re being tested, as Job was. “These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold” (1 Peter 1:7 NKJ).

10.  God’s sovereignty means He always has the last word. God has the last word in everything, including how many days we live. We have promises all over the Bible about healing which we can grasp and believe, but we have to put the whole Bible together for correct doctrine.  It should give us comfort, and not fear, to know everything is in His hands.

How did I walk through this journey? I consumed the Word of God like a ravenous lion tears into a hunk of meat. I communicated with God many times throughout the day, went to sleep at night repeating the Word, and woke up with a prayer on my lips, thankful for the hope we have in Jesus!

God ministered to me in so many amazing ways, and He not only comforted after our loss, my faith is even stronger now. When Jesus died on the cross the veil in the temple was torn from top to bottom showing we can come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:16).  I combined what I knew from being a medical writer and what I learned in the Bible about eternal life and I wrote the book, Swallowed by Life: Mysteries of Death, Resurrection and the Eternal.

Now I’ve combined testimonies and articles I wrote for The Pentecostal Evangel over the years into a book that will bless your boots off. God is working miracles in our generation. He’s working miracles in our families. He works in each of our lives in answer to pray.

Buy What Prayer Can Do here:

Amazon Author Page with my eight books:

 --Copyright Ada Brownell 2018

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

A blind Man Instantly Healed

Note: The following is a chapter in the recently pubished book, What Prayer Can Do: A collection of articles written by Ada Nicholson Brownell, published by The Pentecostal Evangel.

Purchase Here: 


By Lorraine Golightly as told to Ada Brownell

I became a believer in divine healing because I saw my father receive his sight when he was prayed for in a revival meeting.

The accident that caused Daddy’s blindness happened in 1950. I was 9 years old.

Daddy (John Feliciano) was doing construction work in Honolulu, Hawaii, where we lived, when dynamite exploded in his face. One eyeball was completely destroyed; the other was damaged considerably. The blast was so severe that doctors said Daddy should have been dead. Tiny pebbles embedded in his skin all over his body.

“Daddy probably will never see again,” Mom told us when she got home from the hospital.

I was panic-stricken.

“There’s still hope,” said Aunt Virginia, who had come home with Mom. “Jesus can heal your daddy.”

We didn’t know what to think of that. Daddy liked Aunt Virginia, but wouldn’t even let her talk about her religion in our house. When Daddy saw people from her church in street meetings, he’d always yell at them, “You crazy holy rollers!”

Daddy went to church, however, and believed in God. He just didn’t like Aunt Virginia’s kind of religion.

When he came home from the hospital, he had no hope of a miracle. His eyes were in bandages, and he was very depressed.

“I’ve got seven children to support!” he’d say several times a day. “How can a blind man feed seven children? I might as well be dead!’

It was true that he couldn’t support us. Soon we had to live on welfare.

Surgeons hoped surgery would give Daddy sight in his remaining eye, but the operations were unsuccessful. After the last operation, the eye doctor told him there was nothing more they could do for him. There was no hope he ever would see again.

Because of his youth (Daddy was 31 when he was injured) he immediately was trained in a school for the blind. He learned braille and how to use a seeing-eye dog. He even learned how to feel money so he could tell denominations apart.

Yet he remained depressed and saw no reason for living.

“I’ll never be able to see my family again,” Daddy groaned one day. “I can’t take being blind. Killing myself is the only way out.”

Mom tried to talk him out of his despondency, but without success. He actually intended to commit suicide.

Finally, Mom called Aunt Virginia and asked her to come over and talk to my father.

As soon as Aunt Virginia got inside she began talking to Daddy about the Lord and told him what Jesus could do.

“We’re going to have a revival, and the evangelist will pray for the sick,” Aunt Virginia continued. “Will you come?”

“I guess I can try,” Daddy answered, “but I don’t believe it will do any good.”

When the revival started, my aunt and uncle, Dad and Mom, and all of us seven children went to the Pentecostal church. After the lady evangelist preached, it was time for prayer for the sick. Mom took Daddy by the arm and led him to the healing line.

The meeting was in a large church and people were getting healed and praising the Lord. Daddy couldn’t see what was happening around him, but he could hear, and he was scared. He began shaking.

One woman who was healed of deafness gave a big shout when her ears opened. Daddy was more frightened than ever.

Then it was his turn.

“Do you believe in Jesus?” the evangelist asked Daddy.


She began praying that Daddy would receive his sight. Nothing happened.

“Do you really believe?” she asked my father again.


She put her hand on Daddy’s eye and prayed again. Suddenly he began to shout, “I can see! I can see!”

“What do you see?” the evangelist asked.

“I can see shadows,” he cried. “Thank God.”

“The Lord isn’t through yet,” the lady minister told him. “Now believe! Believe!” She began praying for Daddy again.

“Come here,” the evangelist told us children, and we went to the front. I was scared and crying as she lined us all in front of my father.

We discovered the shadows had disappeared, and Daddy could see clearly. One by one we went to him and let him look at us. As he called each child—Margaret, Priscilla, Lorraine (me), Elenore, Johnny, Gordon, and the baby Diane, who was 3 years old, he hugged and kissed us and we cried together.

My sister Margaret and I accepted the Lord Jesus as our Savior that night. Mom and Dad did too. One by one the rest of the children gave their lives to the Lord, and all of us are still serving God.

After he was healed, Daddy was supposed to go back to the doctor, so he kept his appointment. The physicians didn’t believe it when he told them he could see. They were amazed when they took tests and discovered he recovered his sight.

“God did it,” Daddy said.

Daddy had served God faithfully for 19 years when he went to be with the Lord.

I’m glad God’s healing power is available to us today. Doctors thought my sister had a brain tumor, but after she was prayed for, they could find nothing.

 I had an annoying, persistent ear problem accompanied by dizziness and ringing in my ears, which doctors couldn’t seem to help and over which I couldn’t get victory. Then I remembered how God instantly healed Daddy of blindness, and knew the Lord is the same “yesterday, today, and forever.” Immediately the ear problem disappeared.

Now I can say with the Psalmist, ‘Come and hear, all of you who reverence the Lord, and I will tell you what He did for me: for I cried to Him for help, with praises ready on my tongue. He would not have listened if I had not confessed my sins. But He listened! He heard my prayer! He paid attention to it! Blessed be God who didn’t turn away when I was praying and didn’t refuse me His kindness and love” (Psalm 66:16-20 Living Bible paraphrase).

The Pentecostal Evangel, October 16, 1977


Saturday, February 24, 2018

What Prayer Can Do FREE Feb. 24-25 Can God Change a Sinner in a Moment?

FREE Feb. 24-25


A Collection of true stories by Ada Brownell Published by The Pentecostal Evangel

By Ada Brownell

Ennis L. Surratt clutched the cool metal handle of his .45 pistol. Through the weeds he could see three men coming. He knew they would come near where he crouched because they would be coming after the barrel of whiskey that had disappeared from his still the night before.

When the men were only a few feet from the barrel, Ennis stepped out in front of the man who seemed to lead the way.

“You’re not taking this barrel,” Ennis growled, keeping his right hand next to the gun. “You stole it last night, and we’re going to settle it right here.”

He drew his gun and aimed it at the thief.

“Shoot!” the thief yelled as he whirled with his double-barreled shotgun.

 An explosive charge sounded from the shotgun and Ennis fell to the ground. Pain surged through his neck and chest, and hot blood trickled from the wounds, but Ennis raised up on one knee and fired the pistol.

With a cry of anguish, the thief dropped the shotgun and fell into the weeds.

Ennis fell back again, and both men cursed and writhed with pain until they were taken to town for treatment. Ennis was filled with buckshot but not hurt seriously. The other fellow, however, was in serious condition.

Events like this were why the bootlegger became known as “the meanest man in town” and that caught the attention of two lady evangelists holding a tent revival there. The women decided if the meanest man in town would be changed by the power of God, there would be revival.

God reached down one night and struck Ennis upside the head like He did the Apostle Paul. Ennis changed so much he became a fiery gospel preacher that won not only many others to God, but his own children, who became ministers as well. One of his sons pastored the author’s church several years.

Read the story of Ennis Surratt and many other testimonies and truths in What Prayer Can Do, on sale now at

Wednesday, February 21, 2018



By Ada Nicholson Brownell

Reprinted from the book, What Prayer Can Do

 During World War II enemy soldiers entered a small Dutch village, intending to take the young girls for sexual slaves.

The fathers and almost every other man from the village were in battle or in prison. Women and children—some of them teenage girls—were left.

As soldiers came to their homes and seized the younger women, the village mothers and grandmothers gathered in the town square where enemy buses were parked

The women stood and watched as the girls, some barely into their teens, were herded like animals toward the buses. The women had no weapons.

When the first girl was seized and forced into the bus, in unison terrible cries of anguish erupted from the women standing by.

Suddenly they took off their wooden shoes and began to attack the soldiers.

Their daughters were saved because the village women came to defend them.

I met one of the young girls who escaped and immigrated to the United States. She told me this story in Arvada, Colorado. How thankful she was for the cries of anguish from the women as they went into action with the only thing available—their shoes.

I thought of teens—both boys and girls—who are being seized by Satan for his use. One parent, whose son was involved in drugs and was in trouble with the law, told me, “There’s nothing I can do.”

But we don’t have to stand by and see our youths corrupted by Satan, who will steal their talents and love for life, and even kill the body and destroy the soul (John 10:10).

A young married couple came to church without knowing their parents had become Christians and were praying for them.

“Both of us got this desire to read the Bible,” the young man explained. “We bought one and started reading. Instead of starting at the front, we started at the back. We were reading Revelation, and we got scared. We didn’t understand some of it, so we decided we’d better find a church. We came here and gave our lives to Christ.”

The couple learned their parents, who had become Christians, and many of their parents’ friends, were praying for them. The parents didn’t know how to explain to their children what happened in their lives, so they just prayed and their children found God.

Some parents’ prayers aren’t as quickly answered. But when the cry of anguish for souls is sent heavenward, we know God hears (1 John 5:14, 15).

All we can take with us into heaven are other people. We want our families with us for eternity.

Every day I thank God I have children who are dedicated to Him. Even then when one gets into a dangerous situation, I find a place on my knees to intercede for him.

But the cries of anguish and action for youths need not be limited to our families. The cry can go up for our community, our city, and our nation’s children.

We can pray for youths. We can be good examples. We can teach the Bible and its principles. We can encourage them. As parents we can be firm and loving with discipline. We can help them be faithful to the house of God. We can show our love for them.

Yes, there are things we can do to defend our youths. We don’t have to sit idly by. Like the village women, we can use what we have to do battle.

But we won’t fight this battle alone. When the cry of anguish goes up and we put faith to our works, we enlist the help of Almighty God.

The next cry will be the cry of victory!


Tuesday, February 20, 2018


Note: This is the preface to my new book, What Prayer Can Do, a collection of my articles about miracles published in The Pentecostal Evangel over my writing career. Sometimes the miracles we wanted, don't happen--but God still works in our lives. He gave us supernatural peace and joy after we lost our daughter to cancer, and that's a miracle. Jesus came to defeat death and He did! As with the thief on the cross, our Carolyn immediately went into God's  presence and will return when Jesus comes with His saints in the catching away of the church."The dead in Christ will arise first and we who are alive and remain will be caught up to meet Him in the air, and we will always be with the Lord." 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17).

Her spirit will go into the remains of her body, and she will rise and precede the living saints rising into the air! And we'll always be with her and the Lord! Furthermore, as 1 Corinthians 13:12 says, we'll know one another.
What a hope!

Why I still believe in miracles 

By Ada Brownell

       Author’s Note: This was not among articles published by The Pentecostal Evangel, but it did appear in an online version of Enrichment Magazine.

Editor’s Note: An honest look at Scripture can teach us valuable lessons concerning healing. Journey with this author as she discovers some lessons on healing.

God heals some and He does not heal others. This mystery confuses many, and the body of Christ sometimes staggers under a spirit of unbelief.

I’ve entered that valley, too, but as a Christian and retired medical reporter, I still believe in miracles.

 My faith journey began as a child. My friend, Velda Jean Bailey, was stricken with leukemia. My brother-in-law told me about her condition. “The doctors say Velda Jean probably has only two or three weeks to live.”

A woman in my home church tearfully requested prayer for my friend.

A few days later, Velda’s grandfather had been praying with her when her mother saw a change come over her daughter.

“She looked as if new blood were going into her veins,” her mother recalled.

 Velda’s symptoms disappeared and the parents asked for new tests. Diagnostics revealed Velda was completely healed. She was alive the last I heard—25 years later.

 Our daughter, Gwen, didn’t need tubes surgically inserted into her ears after she went forward for prayer. Our youngest daughter Jeanette’s elbow was healed so that it no longer slipped out of the joint when someone pulled on her arm.

Years later, our granddaughter, Melissa, suffered from croup. Our son, Gary, and his wife, Janice, were moving from Denver and due to be in Tulsa, so they left despite a blizzard blowing in. Gary drove the truck and Janice followed in the car. I and Janice’s mother went to our knees in prayer.

Snow fell so fast as Janice followed the truck the windshield wipers wouldn’t keep the windshield cleared. Janice had to stick her head out the window in order to see, bringing the cold air in on Melissa and her little brother, Justin.

When they arrived in Tulsa safely, Janice called us.

“How is Melissa?” I asked.

“The croup is gone. She’s not sick anymore.”

I’d heard sometimes cool moist air helps chest congestion—but cure a fevered child with croup?

We’ve had numerous times when physicians thought a member of our family was in trouble physically. A few years ago, a medical test showed Gary had only 40 percent kidney function, but after prayer, a specialist found nothing wrong. Gary never had kidney problems again, it’s been twenty years. More recently after a cancer diagnosis for a different problem, he was declared cancer free.

At about age 30, Gwen had symptoms of multiple sclerosis. After prayer and many tests, physicians said she was fine—and she is fine, 15 years later.

Our six younger grandchildren are miracles, and I believe it’s because God answers prayer. Complications during their mothers’ pregnancy could have endangered four of their lives or their future, but God intervened. Two other grandchildren came to us through the miracle of adoption.

With five children, and now grandchildren, we’ve had so many medical problems changed from serious to insignificant after prayer I can’t list them all. Yet, Carolyn, our oldest daughter, died at age 31 of an aggressive form of lymphoma, and our son, Jaron, has suffered from asthma since age 2.

But I still believe for Jaron’s healing and know God heals.

I’ve been a student of the Bible almost all my life and although answers to why some are healed and some are not is a mystery, the Word explains a great deal about healing and miracles.

Here are a few things I’ve learned.

1.     All humankind is destined to die because of sin. God told Adam and Eve if they ate of the forbidden tree, they would die. Satan, the liar, said, “You won’t die! God just wants to keep something good from you!” (my translation) Adam and Eve ate and became mortals. We, as their offspring, inherited the curse of sin. Read about it in Genesis 3.

I like the way the King James Version explains in Romans 8:22 how our mortality affects us: “We know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.”

2.     Healing is in the atonement. Centuries before Jesus came Isaiah prophesied, “Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed (Isaiah 53:4-5). Peter quoted the verses and said, “By his wounds you have been healed” (1 Peter 2:24).

Our Savior knows what it is to suffer. They plucked his beard and tore flesh off His back with a whip for our healing. Yet, even before pain gripped His body from the nails in his hands, and the other torture He endured on the cross, Jesus had compassion and healed many among the multitudes that followed Him.

3.     An atmosphere of doubt interferes with God’s Spirit working among us. Jesus Himself couldn’t do many miracles in Nazareth because of a spirit of unbelief (Matthew 13:57-58). In Luke’s description of the Lord’s visit to His home town in Nazareth, Jesus told how many lepers in Israel needed healing, but only one—Naaman—was healed. The heavens were shut up to many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, but because of unbelief Elijah was sent to only one--the widow of Zarephath.

Jesus does have the power for miracles among a throng of doubters, but we often absorb the unbelief.

4.     What our minds feed on affects our personal faith. Romans 10:16-18 tells us faith comes through hearing the word of God. Much of the church today attends services an hour and a half a week. We complain about 45-minute sermons and have no time for prayer in the altars, but spend several hours each day watching TV but we’ll sit outside in a snow storm for three hours to watch a football game. Romans 8:6, 7 indicates when we allow our flesh to take charge of our minds; it interferes with walking after the Spirit.

5.     We build our faith remembering miracles God has done.  In every church and prayer group I’ve attended “these signs, including healing, have followed them that believe” (Mark 16:17). One time I was asked to speak about prayer to the youth group. Instead of speaking, I asked a half dozen people with testimonies of God’s intervention in a crisis.

 The father of a large family who worked on a highway crew urgently prayed because the weatherman had forecast rain and he couldn’t work in the rain. Rain followed the paving machine all day, but it never rained where they worked.

 Several told of miraculous healings—two where doctors had given no hope. One woman told how God turned away a forest fire racing toward their house as she and the children stood at the window praying and repeating Psalm 91. I later wrote their testimonies for The Pentecostal Evangel in a story, “What Prayer Can Do.”

Yet, a serious diagnosis such as cancer of the pancreas strikes faith-paralyzing fear.  I believe part of that is Satan’s “spin” on truth. Like every expert of propaganda, he uses a smidgeon of truth in his destructive lies. While treatments have advanced, cancer of the pancreas has meant almost certain death. But Gospel Singer Jimmy Blackwood, son of James Blackwood, was healed of pancreatic cancer in 1984. I interviewed him about it for the newspaper where I worked. Jimmy is still singing.

6.     We have a drought of God’s power because we don’t seek the Gifts of healing, faith and miracles. God gives the Gifts to those for whom He has a specific purpose but He also tells us to ask for them (1 Corinthians 12). Jesus said, “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give” (Matthew 10:8).

7.     Lack of fasting and prayer affects spiritual outcomes. In Ezra’s time Israel fasted and prayed for God’s protection over their families (Ezra 8:20-22). The disciples couldn’t cast out demons because they didn’t fast and pray before they went out (Mark 9:28, 29). God is able to do more than we can ask or think, but it is according to the power that works in us (Ephesians 3:20-21). According to the Word, prayer and fasting increases that power.

8.     Although we know our sin doesn’t cause most sicknesses, sin could cause us to be sick or even die. Paul wrote, “For those who eat and drink without discerning the body of Christ eat and drink judgment on themselves. “That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have fallen asleep. But if we were more discerning with regard to ourselves, we would not come under such judgment” (1 Corinthians 11:29--31).

When, however, some people witnessed the healing of a blind man and asked who sinned, the man or his parents, Jesus said, “Neither, so that the works of God might be displayed in him” (John 9:1-3).

9.     Some people aren’t healed or delivered because of “the greater good.” For instance, when our oldest daughter was near death from cancer she left a witness. Four people gave their lives to Christ and others recommitted themselves to God. When people experience a death close to them, they realize their own mortality and need of a Savior.

10.  Often God uses faith and works and we should give Him credit for these miracles. James said, “What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? … Faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead” James 2:14-16). I was prayed for several times because of knee pain. When I had knee replacements, the pain disappeared. Medications along with God’s mercy have helped Jaron live triumphantly with asthma for 40 years. I consider that a gift from God.

 I believe the knowledge of physicians today is given by the Lord and furthermore, it is a sign of Christ’s coming. God told Daniel,  But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased” (Daniel 12:4).

On the medical beat at the newspaper where I worked, over and over I was told how physicians couldn’t do much for diseases and medical conditions until the 20th Century. The most important things that changed health and longevity, according to physicians I’ve interviewed, are clean water, immunizations and antibiotics—but God also has given wisdom for marvelous diagnostics, medications, and treatments.

11. Sometimes healing doesn’t come because we’re being tested, as Job was.

“These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold” (1 Peter 1:7 NKJ).

12.  God’s sovereignty means He always has the last word. God has the last word in everything, including how many days we live. We have promises all over the Bible about healing which we can grasp and believe, but we have to put the whole Bible together for correct doctrine.  It should give us comfort, and not fear, to know everything is in His hands. “This is the confidence that we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him” (1 John 5:14-15).

But His “last words” to His children always are words of love (See John 3:16).
-- Originally published in the online Enrichment Journal, the Assemblies of God magazine for Spirit-filled ministers.