With the morning sun caressing my face, I prepared to read the section of verses for my quiet time in the Word.
What I read stilled and pierced my heart...
"In one of the villages, Jesus met a man with an advanced case of leprosy. When the man saw Jesus, he bowed with his face to the ground, begging to be healed. "Lord," he said, "if you are willing, you can heal me and make me clean."
Jesus reached out and touched him. "I am willing," he said. "Be healed!" And instantly the leprosy disappeared. (Luke 5:12-13)
I have read that verse multiple times over the years, but right that moment... it touched something deep in my heart.
A deeply buried desire. A desire that I don't want to have or feel anymore...
The desire to be healed.
I tried, again, to bury that hope & desire to be healed as deep as I could, but I could feel the Lord digging down in there... reaching and pulling aside the dirt, rock and cement that I painfully & deliberately used to bury, over the years... that desire.
Looking out to the mountains and seeing the golden glow of the rising sun... a whisper escaped from my lips, "Lord, if you are willing, you can heal me and make me hear. Today. Right now."
For so many years, since I was a child, people have come to me and asking to pray for healing for me. They would put their hands on my ears and pray with all they had. In the beginning, I was grateful...
But as the years went on by and still no healing... I grew to resent the prayers.
While on the outside, I would smile and say, "Sure!" when someone innocently asked if they could pray for me. But on the inside, over the pounding of my heart, I would be yelling, "No! I am fine just the way I am! Leave me alone!"
As I grew up over the years, I buried that hope & desire to be healed as deep as I could...
Because I was afraid.
Afraid to let my hope rise.
Afraid to feel the crushing disappointment.
Afraid that I would be denied once again.
Afraid that I would be told that I don't have enough faith to be healed.
For years I used to silently ask... demand... beg the Lord to heal me, but I stopped doing that a long while ago.
It wasn't until I served at a deaf school in Mexico that I started to "accept" being deaf.
That is where the prayers stopped. I still had my struggles, but at least I had more peace about being a deaf woman.
Sitting there and listening to my thoughts rolling around, I sense the Lord speaking to my heart, turning the verse around and saying...
"Marillyn, if you are willing, you can embrace being deaf and make Me greater in your life for others to see Me."
Really, Lord? My being deaf will make You greater? What about healing me? Won't that make You even more greater?
"Yes, but for only a short time and people will forget. Even you will forget, but your deafness is my gift to you. For I am greater in your weakness! Your inability to hear is what drives you closer to Me. That's why I created you to be who you are"
I sat there... speechless, a calm settling my thoughts.
"My daughter, you are a miracle to many because I have given you many gifts, abilities and talents. You can speak. You can read lips. You are able to wear a hearing aid. You have been able to do many different things that doctors claimed you couldn't and shouldn't do! Those are the things that bring glory to me."
I could sense a a different kind of healing happening at that moment...
"I promise you, Marillyn, you will be healed. Be patience. Be steadfast. Be courageous. And most importantly...
Be who I created you to be."