Right on in your first paragraph!
I’m sorry to hear about your children. I’ll say no more in regards to that.
I also think that most miracles that happen aren’t proclaimed to other people. The miracles that I’ve seen are usually not suitable for discussion with other people.
And yet, Don makes a good point. I wonder how often things don’t work because of our own lack of faith. If it can happen to apostles. . .]]>
I got kicked in the face hard enough to pick me up (a training exercise accident). Not a mark on me afterwards.
Yet … I’ve buried three children too.
I’ve blogged on the topic.
Don — I’m just thinking of miracles happening maybe ten or twenty times more often, still a drop in the bucket. They’d still be thought of as miracles, though we wouldn’t see them so much as miraculous as magic, perhaps.]]>
Second, I think the “God’s will” argument is a bunch of garbage. When a blessing isn’t fulfilled, it is more likely that the voice’s will is not being done rather than God’s will is being done. When the spirit is prompting the content of the blessing, non fulfillment is rare.
Lastly, I think we bless the sick because miracles can and do happen. I think they are rare, though. There are, in my mind more importantly, tangential benefits to blessing for the one who blesses and the blessed. It is an exercise in faith. It is also an opportunity to receive counsel from your father in heaven. I think many of us have received answers to prayers while receiving blessings something unrelated.]]>
Oh, and God’s will does not always come to pass. If that were so, there probebly would not have been a rebellion in heaven and all the fallout since then>:)]]>
I think your comments are right on.
So I guess our blessings/healings/non-healings are really all about us and our faith, how it effects us and how we deal with it….the healing if it does take place is almost a side effect.]]>
I think the concept of the healing prayer is a cultural creation that has seen it’s time pass. Think back to conditions 2000 years ago. Back then just about any bug or injury would very likely result in the death of the sufferer. An official blessing from an authorized representative of a diety had the power to give an individual something he/she would not otherwise have– hope. Hope beyond random probability. We learn from scripture that hope preceeds faith so by offering someone hope the priesthood holder was facilitating a faith-exercising experience that was completely independent of whatever malady troubled the afflicted. Random “healings” were consequently credited to the priesthood blessing reinforcing the prospect of hope for other afflicted individuals. Success stories were repeated and proliferated in order to help build/sustain the legend. I’m not discounting miracles entirely but I think that actual miracles are incredibly rare. Events like the plagues Moses called down upon the Egyptians or Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead are miracles. Stories of Brother Joseph healing random members during a cholera epidemic are merely modern stories that reinforce the legend. This is the opposite side of the same coin you played in #8 when you wrote, “I think we look for subtle ways to justify why things don’t happen.” Today because we have a much greater understanding of the body and disease and due to our success with life-saving measures hope must come from divining and understanding God’s will. Both my great-grandfather and my grandfather died of simple, easily treatable infections and their deaths came as quite a surprise to both the family and their treating physicians. Both died despite numerous blessings by worthy priesthood holders and unwavering faith of the blessed and his family. How else to explain the death than to play the “God’s will weasel [card]“? Based on your fomulation someone involved in those two specific situations had to be lying about either their worthiness or the measure of their faith for the blessings to be so ineffectual. Given that I know the individuals involved either of those two propositions would come as a monumental surprise. That’s why I make the claim that the outcome of a healing blessing is completely irrelevant. And yes, I think that the miracle of modern medical technology makes the blessing to heal an anachronism.]]>
It would make it a lot easier for me if God would just act / react like I think He should!]]>
1) we didn’t have miracles at all — then we could rest in the concept that the miracle is that God is aware and loves us.
2) we had a lot more miracles — then we could rest in the faith that miracles turn out like clockwork.
It is the fact that they happen, but rarely, and without an easy way to predict them. That makes it harder, really.]]>