The Ultimate Cure
"How excellent is thy lovingkindness, O God! Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of thy wings." Psalms 36:7
If you believe that Divine Power created us, then you can and must believe that same power can make us whole. If God made the earth, the seas, the stars, and each intricate particle of living creatures, then how much more simple for Him to cure illness, if He wills it?
Not until recently have their been any formal studies on the power of divine intervention. Certainly, any study is by definition limited, for how can one pretend to qualify and quantify God's power? The fact that man feels he must do studies in order to prove or disprove God's power says a lot about the condition of the modern human mind. The studies themselves should not be used as a basis for faith, but provide interesting anecdotal evidence.
One study showed that prayer reduced the amount of complications of coronary patients.1 Other studies have revealed that individuals who attend church have better medical outcomes. Those who believe in God and pray during their illness fare better in addition to reducing stress.2 Prayer has been shown to affect self-esteem, anxiety and depression.3
Religion and medicine used to be intrinsically linked but during the Renaissance Era we began to make large strides in scientific discovery. This led to a change in how people viewed the world. This change, beginning much, much earlier, did not become prevalent until the advent of the printing press made knowledge more available to the common person. Before, most people believed in God; after, they became enamored with their own powers of reasoning and began to seek out ways to deny God. Truth does not require believers to remain truth. If God maintains our every breath, who better to seek for help when the body fails? Better yet, seek Him before it fails.
Faith, however, does not supplant our own ability to care for ourselves and others.
Those who seek healing by prayer should not neglect to make use of the remedial agencies within their reach. It is not a denial of faith to use such remedies as God has provided to alleviate pain and to aid nature in her work of restoration…God has put in our power to obtain a knowledge of the laws of life. This knowledge has been placed within our reach for use. We should employ every facility for the restoration of health, taking every advantage possible, working in harmony with natural laws. When we have prayed for the recovery of the sick, we can work with all the more energy, thanking God that we have the privilege of cooperating with Him and asking His blessing on the means which He Himself has provided.4
God has given us the faculties for caring for ourselves, but without faith that He will do the best for us-even if we don't always understand His methods-we miss out on the power of His grace, which is the ultimate cure.
Written by Sheryle Beaudry, RN,C, BSN - Copyright © 2000
1 A Randomized, Controlled Trial of the Effects of Remote Intercessory Prayer on Outcomes in Patients Admitted to the Coronary Care Unit, William S. Harris, PhD, et al, JAMA, vol. 159 no. 19, October 25, 1999
3 Spirituality and Its Effect on Recovery, Tom Gray, Dr. Koop dot-com, 2000
4 Conflict and Courage, E.G. White, Review and Herald Publishing Association, Washington, DC, 1970, 240.5