Jesus our Healer,
we place in your gentle hands those who are sick.
Ease their pain,
and heal the damage done to them
in body, mind or spirit.
Be present to them through the support of friends
and in the care of doctors and nurses,
and fill them with the warmth of your love
now and always.
God is present with us every moment of our lives, He is nearer to us than our breath, closer than our skin, and yet there are times when it does not appear to be so. There are times when the light that darkness cannot overcome seems a little bit dimmed. Those are often times when our need for God and His touch of peace will increase.
Jesus is a God of thousand welcomes and His ministry of healing is available to all of us, yet our need for it varies depending on what is going on in our lives. We each experience hurt in life, we are each invited to grow more into wholeness, into who God has intended us to be. Jesus invites us into a deep honest relationship with Him and is there to accompany us on our journey. His deep love for each of us is experienced through this relationship of mutual love, and through people that show their care to us, some of them strangers, people we ‘randomly’ meet. Christ’s compassion and love towards us encourages us to have compassion towards ourselves and towards others; in Him is our peace. And yet healing is a journey, with its ups and downs; through it we come to know that Christ is near us, beneath us, within us, above us, with us.
Sometimes healing will involve leaving behind our ways of acting and letting God teach us His way of acting and being in the world. Rev. Ruth Patterson says that “so often in our Christian lives we are looking for a problem solving God rather than to the God who uses the problems to lead us through to greater wholeness”. For some of us the need for the ministry of healing is more obvious at certain times of our lives as we have a visible condition of illness, or we have experienced loss, bereavement, are caring for a loved one in need or perhaps are struggling in some area of our lives; and so we need support. Those times, though often difficult, can as well be times when we experience God’s grace more acutely. They can be a sort of ‘thin places’, experiences through which we have a notion that a distance between Heaven and Earth is paper thin, as Celts believed. We will often know that through those who have decided to walk this journey with us. At those times we may need a listening ear, some nurturing inner silence, a community, someone who will be ‘God with skin’ for us. Perhaps at those times, without even knowing it, we will be a God with skin for other too – by our very being.
Dr Iva Beranek is the Ministry Facilitator for the CMH: Ireland