What you are about to read, well…I could hardly believe myself but here goes.
Recently, the Hispanic churches of my home town of Stephenville - Baptist, Charismatic and Pentecostal – joined together to hear an evangelist from Mexico. At one point in one of the services, he said he believed God wanted to heal someone’s teeth. My own daughter-in-law had just had fillings on the RIGHT side of her mouth but was in pain on the left side. At her dad’s urgings (Simon Hernandez, he pastors a local Charismatic church), she reluctantly went forward for prayer. Then came the amazing part: She told me that she felt a tingling on the RIGHT side of her mouth. The evangelist asked another lady to look in her mouth to confirm that God had actually filled her teeth with GOLD fillings! I’ve seen these fillings with my own eyes! They are much smoother and shinier than the manmade side AND (get this) they are in the shape of birds and crosses!
Now, I’ve heard of such things taking place in Central and South American nations and, I must admit, I ashamedly poo-pooed these stories. Thoughts such as “Too Pentecostal!” , “Just plain weird!” , “false signs and wonders!” and "why not brand new teeth?" may be passing through your own mind as you read this. On the other hand, where unity is present, the power and presence of God is often found. In my own life, I’ve seen some pretty incredible miracles take place in living rooms in Arlington and right here in Stephenville, too, at September Song Bed & Breakfast where we meet for House Church. Why? Personally, I believe it’s because of the love and unity mustered up by a bunch of people who just can’t seem to get enough of one another’s company, centered around the teachings of Jesus and His presence. God seems to love it when His kids are playing well together and He blesses them. That’s not unlike me, as a young father, getting ice cream for my four kids when they were “playing nice.” Such behavior seems to COMMAND a blessing!
Barbara and I celebrated our anniversary just last night at Vanderbilt Place. All my kids were there, my parents as well as some of my church family. There was my daughter-in-law, mouth wide open, a crowd gathered around going “oooh” and “ahhhh.” She seems to be telling everybody “look what the Lord has done!”
I recall the verse that says, “Many will come and SEE and put their trust in the Lord.” Well, through my beautiful daughter-in-law’s choppers, He’s giving them something to see. As a man who was in severe pain and walking with a cane 5 years ago, I can attest: Jesus STILL heals the sick.
Imagine what would happen if we all…Hispanic and Anglo, Black, too…Protestant and Catholic…just decided to cast our manmade doctrinal differences to the wind and focus the whole thing upon lifting up Jesus and focusing upon HIS teachings alone! Can we not try BEING the Church – the ekklesia, the “called out ones” - rather than merely GOING to church, having “a form of godliness but lacking the power thereof?”