Faith healer post

About the Faith Healer post… I didn’t know Charley  had posted about this until this afternoon. (We’ve all been sick and taking turns caring for baby while the other sleeps, so he posted it while I was asleep before he left for work. Just one of those busy weeks.)  

So for people who have asked (now that I’ve read it), yeah this happened a few  weeks ago. It doesn’t have to do with her cold she has now, but with her arthrogryposis and amyoplasia.  

The guy  was really, really nice. He asked our permission and everything.  It wasn’t a “faith healing” so much as a “faith praying.” Well, tomato tomauto. And it was fine at the time. It wasn’t until later that we really thought about it and what impact it would have on our daughter. So we still very much enjoyed the party we were at and had a GREAT time!

Hmm… one thing I wanted to add was that the person who prayed for Lali said he had heard of amyoplasia (he was in a field where he was educated about muscles) and wanted to do a “muscle test.” Even though the rational me would have balked at this, the desperate mother who has tried everything and would do anything to make this all go away won out. At first I seriously thought, “Wow, Children’s Hospital, Shriners Hospital and the Muscle Clinic all didn’t have something like this!” Hmm, maybe that should have been my first clue. :)

It’s hard because mothers like me are desperate and  going through hard times. The last thing we want is for someone to  take advantage of us  and our  feelings. I consider myself an educated person, heck I was top  of my class in college, but I’ll admit that it wasn’t until after the muscle test began  that I realized it was pseudo-science. Originally I thought maybe he would feel her muscles and tell us ways to massage them so they got the most blood flow and could be stimulated better. Or something.  Instead he pressed down on my  extended arm while touching Lali’s tummy or  head and let me know if there was a problem based on the fact that he could push down my  arm while I was holding her…  because we were  “linked.”  

He found problems with her muscles (duh), but also “problems” with her ovaries and heart.

That’s not okay. And, no, these problems don’t exist.  

(Hey remember the time when I was having a hard pregnancy and a psychic at my  work told me that my baby had diabetes? Yeah I hate stuff like that.)

At one point I was working against him to keep my arm from going down (not just being difficult, but because I knew there  were no  problems with her ovaries and thought maybe I was doing something wrong), but he just pressed it harder so it would drop and he could  say there was a problem.

But really it all happened so fast.

At the end he prayed for Lali. By this point I wanted to leave, but I believe in prayer so why was I  so uncomfortable?  I didn’t want people to think I would go through all that and balk at the prayer. (It’s funny that this happened in front of other people including  my husband and a pastor, but everyone seemed frozen.)  After the prayer he repeated the same test again, but this time  my arm stayed firm so he pronounced everything  healed. All healed. He said that the prayer would cause Lali’s body to start regrowing muscle. (Yeah I know.)

I’m glad  I had this experience, especially  glad  this happened  while Lali is still little and unable to understand why she was the center of attention for all  the wrong reasons. This little kid just assumes she is the center of the universe so this was nothing new for her. :)

It also gave me the chance to reflect on why I was uncomfortable with a prayer like this. It’s because it turns God into a vending machine. You put in your quarters (prayer) and take out your soda (miracle). Yes the Bible says that if we ask anything ACCORDING TO HIS WILL he hears us. But the catch is that it has to be God’s will. And who is a faith healer to determine God’s will? Who am I to do that either? Yes, I pray for healing for my daughter, and I have faith in God and believe that he can heal her. I ask in Jesus’ name. I ask and I believe he hears me.

So there must be something brewing in heaven. I bet God is going to use Laelia’s condition in a great and mighty way in people’s lives. And I wouldn’t want to  change that… well I probably still would if I could because, hey, I’m her  mommy! :)  

So since  this is our SECOND encounter with someone who wanted to do a faith healing, (SECOND!!!) we’ve come up with a few rules now that I never thought we  would have to enforce. (This applies to faith healers and their ilk.)

Rule #1: You are not allowed to express an opinion to our daughter  (whether  based  medically or religiously) that goes against our belief that God created her and loves her and can use her just the way she is.

Rule #2: You are not allowed to do a faith healing or suggest a faith healing around our daughter. No talk is allowed  that makes her feel small or less significant because of her condition.

Rule #3: If you do suggest a faith healing to us in an appropriate way, (no Charley won’t hit you… um, at least I think he won’t hit you  :)), we will give you permission to pray for her, on your own, well away from her so she does  not feel awkward or stigmatized. Then if  she is healed, we will promise to give God full credit and thank you for your prayers… which apparently were better than ours.  We promise. Cross our hearts.

That way it’s dependent on  YOUR faith, not hers or ours. Hey, and if you want to go crazy, you can call down fire from Heaven like  Elijah to prove your point.  

But I  doubt you will.

5 Responses to “Faith healer post”

  1. Bethany says:

    Good for you. Good, good, good, GOOD for you. I may have already mentioned this in one of the comments back forever ago, but we had the same thing happen with Natalie just a few days before she was born. Someone called on the phone saying that they had prayed and that our baby was healed, that we just had to have faith (and then they made me put the phone up to my stomach so they could talk “to” Natalie… talk about awkward!!). Of course nothing changed. Like you said, we had total faith that God *could* heal our baby, but we had a feeling that would happen through surgery–not another person’s “more believing” prayer. And our love or hopes for our daughter were in no way affected by her condition. I’m proud of you guys for setting up boundaries to protect your precious little girl… even from people who control God’s will. ;)

  2. Baggins says:

    Wow. That guy makes me so mad.

    You may disagree and (I won’t love you any less ^_^), but I truly believe that the miracles described in Acts were not just confined to that period of history- that there really are godly people still around today who *are* so mature in their faith and in tune with God’s will that they *do* know when he has chosen to heal somebody and he is able to work through them to do so spontaneously.

    People like that guy do nothing but undermine the ministry of those with the true gift of healing. What you described sounded more like a seance than an act of faith.

    Shroud- If there is a next time, I’d gladly come hold him down for you. ;)

  3. Melissa Rowe says:

    “It’s because it turns God into a vending machine. You put in your quarters (prayer) and take out your soda (miracle). Yes the Bible says that if we ask anything ACCORDING TO HIS WILL he hears us. But the catch is that it has to be God’s will.”

    I love that quote… turning God into a vending machine. It’s a good illustration and is exactly what we try to do. I remember I had a friend recently who used the whole “desires of my heart” to justify the fact that she should be getting a laptop, an ipod, and a car or something of the sort very soon. ;)

    This was the guy at the same party I was at, right? I believe I remember walking up just as he was leaving. I don’t know what I would have done in the actual situation either, but I think your rules are a good idea and very fair. We can’t speak for God, we can only have faith that He knows what He is doing with us. I guess these situations can only better prepare us for how to respond in the future and also make us more aware of our God.

  4. admin says:

    Thanks for all the great comments and emails guys! I just wanted to comment on the comments and add that I loved Bethany’s personal story of God healing Natalie through surgery (which also requires a bucket of faith and prayer for parents to go through). I also love that Baggins is willing to contribute to beating up random strangers with my husband (*sigh* boys :)), and even though I have my doubts, if you find someone with that gift of healing, I would trust you, Baggins, to pass on our information so they can pray for Lali! But sadly, since we’ve been hurt by people (we had another experience not mentioned above that happened when we were visiting the Dead Sea Scrolls in San Diego and Lali was in four casts at that time… egh), it would have to be prayer from a distance. :(

    But I especially loved Melissa’s reminder that it “makes us more aware of our God.” I guess that’s the point. And that’s one thing this whole situation did do–it reminded me of God and his amazing works, and forced me to seek him and his will and to acknowledge his workings in my daughter’s life.

  5. Laelia Sky » Blog Archive » Abortion says:

    [...] I didn’t know I would need rules for this like I did with faith healers, but maybe I do. (Click on the word “rules” [...]

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