Summary: We must believe in the power of God to be healed and it through this we can be healed.
Believing and Healing
1st Corinthians 12 4 -11
A few years ago I was diagnosed with the breathing disease; Pulmonary Fibrosis. I had been treated by my general practitioners for severe breathing difficulties noticeable especially during my morning worship services. About half way through I began becoming short of breath and in serving Communion I could hardly make it through serving the elements. Local doctors treated me for everything from walking pneumonia to bronchitis.
Finally I saw my friend Bill Lawrence who had just retired as Chief Flight Surgeon at Fort Rucker and he immediately referred me to a Pulmonary Specialist in nearby Dothan.
After a battery of test and examinations, Debbie and I were sitting in one of the examination rooms and the young doctor came in and said, “Reverend Bracewell, I have some bad news for you. You have a fatal illness termed as Pulmonary Fibrosis and within two years you will be dead.” Well that was like being hit by a freight train going full speed ahead while I stood in the middle of the tracks. There was no bed-side manner just the plain blunt diagnosis that I was going to be dead within two years. I remember sitting in my study at home surrounded by all of my books on theology and psychology and counseling and becoming more and more frustrated. I was mad with everyone and especially with God. I had been a good and faithful servant all of my adult life and how could the Almighty do this to me. Finally I broke down and wept and came to the place where I prayed for healing. Now in all of my years preaching I have preached about healing and stood by the beds of the sick and dying praying for healing to take place in their bodies hoping that something would take place.
It was me in that very position praying for healing in my own body now. All at once a feeling of calm seemed to slowly surround me and that still small voice that God speaks with said ever so softly; “Healing will come to those that believe” I then realized that the most importing thing that in part of our asking is believing. Every time I return to the specialist in Dothan he is amazed that I have become no worse but in fact in some areas have actually improved. I never miss the opportunity to witness about faith and believing in the healing that will take place if we only give God a chance to do his work in our human bodies. I witness to everyone that is standing still long enough for me to begin that witness. No, it is not getting up on my soapbox or standing on the street corner evangelizing but just witnessing in a calm conversational tone just as God had demonstrated to me in that “still small voice.” I find that people will stop and listen and then will began to ask simple questions about the healing that had taken place in my life. I talk about the scripture where Jesus said; “ask and it will be given to you…” And the most important thing I share with them is in believing. You cannot make deals with God and all you need to do is simply believe. I hope this calm thought-for-the day will help someone who reads this believes. Don’t test God. Use that faith that we share as his children to just believe. Believe in His love and His Grace and really believe in His Healing Power. My diagnosis was three and a half years ago!
In the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit,
A Special Forces Hymn
Written by Rev. Thomas F. Bracewell
Intelligence Officer serving with B Company 1st Bn. 11th Special Forces USAR
On an airborne training exercise in 1979 I was injured when my parachute failed to open properly. While on convalesce leave and continuing to work with my unit it was brought to my attention that the airborne troops had no hymn unto themselves. I felt God calling me to use my writing skills that He had given me to attempt this project. Having seen how paratroop activities go from a first hand experience I began to work on words that fit the mission we were called to do.
The words began to come into place and the music that seemed most appropriate to fit was that found in The Navy Hymn, Eternal Father Strong to Save
(Melita) by John B Dykes.
These are the words;
O Father God of Majesty
(Airborne Special Forces Hymn)
O Father God of Majesty,
With firm hand guide our canopy.
Protect us Lord by day and night,
May gentle winds guide our flight.
Our silver wings we trust to Thee,