You know that one, right? What would Jesus do?
And the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would want done unto you.
Have you ever wondered why Jesus didn’t heal everyone He met? Only some were healed. He was God, why not heal everyone. Was that cruel? What a tough question.
I can’t presume an answer, but I have some ideas. We know from scripture that some people didn’t have enough faith to be healed (Mt. 13:58).
But I think there is more to it. I think part of the answer lies in the mystery of suffering. Jesus shows us that suffering, even suffering unto death, can be a source of redemption if you unite it with God.
Suffering can be a source of mystical redemption applied along with Christ’s sufferings for yourself and others (Col 1:24).
Suffering can be a way of showing you that you’re doing something wrong and that you need to change course; a heart attack may just be the wake up call to finally move from a stressful job or change your long standing eating habits.
Suffering may be what’s needed to make your heart more open to empathy and understanding the pain of others. There are so many stories of a family member impacted for example by a drunk driver and then creating a support group for others.
And your suffering might be what others need to see in order to realize the blessings they have in their own life. Thank you God that I have warm running water for my shower this morning, thank you God that I have a safe house and comfortable bed, thank you God that I have food and a refrigerator … and so on.
And someone’s suffering may be the opportunity for another person to experience the gift of practicing self-giving and generosity rather than being self-absorbed. Have you ever watched a person in a wheelchair struggle to carry groceries and then you see someone offer to help that person. Isn’t that a good feeling?
God wants everything to ultimately turn out for good and you know, the highest good is Heaven. If suffering here on earth helps us on our journey to heaven, then it can be good, just like being healed can be good. A tough question can have a complex spectrum of answers (and I’m sure I haven’t even covered the tip of the iceberg) but one thing I didn’t do was judge God as cruel for not healing everyone.
If you’re the one suffering, that’s not easy, I get it, I’ve been there and I have felt depleted, dejected, depressed, forgotten and even angry. Sometimes it’s helpful to talk to someone else, but if you’re at all like me, you prefer to keep to yourself. But, even I talk in prayer to God and ‘offer it up’ … offering up your sufferings may sound trite to hear someone else tell you to do that, but there’s a sense of accomplishment when I choose to do it myself.
Have you ever wondered why Jesus didn’t heal everyone? What thoughts did you come up with? What do you think now?