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Faith Comment published in the Petersfield Post

8 February 2012: Dominic Clarke, St Matthew's, Blackmoor and Whitehill

God's gifts of grace

Throughout the gospels we discover that Jesus had the power to miraculously heal sick people. Jesus' power was incredible and we believe that it still works, although it seems unpredictable. The truth is that no matter how much faith we have there are no guarantees of healing (as we might imagine healing to be) and no explanation as to why it happens or why not. This is often even Christian folk's problem with the healing ministry. In a world where we want complete understanding it is very hard to embrace mystery.

And yet healing does comes in the most amazing way from God all the time. One interesting reflection I was sharing with a friend recently was how in the process of suffering and in the grip of illness God gives little gifts of grace and love all the time. I can never forget the period of time when my Mum left home to move into a hospice and I went to see her and she was so happy! "The room is so nice", my Mum said, "the bed is so comfy! The staff are wonderful and the food is delicious!". Other healing processes took place too, through the people who came to visit or got in touch. Old memories, good memories, were stirred. This was just an astounding act of healing for me to see.

Healing is a gift for us all mediated through people. Those people may be doctors and nurses but they could equally be friends, family or just people with concern, interest and time to talk and listen. This is a very special gift indeed given by God and something truly miraculous and astounding. Doing that consciously with prayer, with God in our heart and with the space to allow the Holy Spirit to work through us...? Well then truly amazing things can and do happen.

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