Cole Porter (great musical composer of the 20th century) was left crippled by a horseback riding accident, endured many surgeries, and finally lost one of his legs. But it is said that on one occasion when he was told that his Broadway show was a hit, he leaped out of his wheelchair and ran up a flight of stairs to share the good news.
My father told me of a barbor whose shop caught on fire. In a moment of panic, he jerked the massive barbors chair out of the floor with his bare hands and ran from the shop carring it.
I have heard of at least one saint who sang hymns in a state of spiritual ecstasy while being burned at the stake. Then there is Saint Theresa of Avila who was reported to have risen from the floor in spiritual ecstasy on several occasions. There is a statue of her doing so in the Vatican.
All the above sounds fantastic, but does it happen in daily life, even now, to ordinary people in varying degrees? I think it does. We see it in the power of suggestion. I have heard of hypnotists telling their patients they will hate liquor or cigarettes, etc. from the moment they come out of their hypnotic trance (and there are evidently cases in which it was so). I have heard of intense, totally focused brain waves of someone moving a little electric train ever so slightly.
Biofeedback is a common term in modern life. However, the Bible, thousands of years ago, sometimes refers to belief as necessary for healing. First, let me explain, however, that I do not question the will and purposes of a sovereign God. Some are healed and some are not according to His will and purposes (regardless of what they, themselves, do). Nor is this some “health and wealth doctrine” or some trendy New Age thing.
Still, Proverbs tells us that “As a man thinketh, so is he“, and that “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine“, and that “The spirit of a man upholds his infirmities“, and that “We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us.” That’s a lot of good stuff to gnaw on. The Bible also tells us that God “makes streams in the desert“.
However, I believe that we must jerk our personal power cords out of those tiny, sputtering, stinking, gaseous generators we keep in the garrage and (metaphorically speaking) plug directly into Con Edison.
In the Bible, Abigail prophesied to David (later King David) that he was “caught up in the bundle of life” with God. This was while he was still running from King Saul (who was trying to kill him), flying by the seat of his pants in the wilderness with a wild and crazy crowd of followers, and playing both ends against the middle with a pagan king.
David would soon marry Abigail (good choice!) and the rest is history. David would have a vision (which would come to pass) of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel (which he would help make a great nation) and of God’s temple there. In his mind was victory and in his line would be the Lord Jesus Christ.
David had been anointed by Samuel as king (under God’s direction) many years before he actually became king. It seems to me that, by God’s grace, David knew who he was where he was(even while still in the wilderness). I think this is the key to wilderness victory. Kingship was greater in his spirit than the wilderness and Saul’s threats that immediately surounded him.
Cole Porter evidently forgot for a moment that he was disabled and ran up the stairs. The barbor forgot for a moment that nobody can lift a barbor chair bolted into the floor. Adrenaline, doubtlessly, played a part. But I don’t think it can take all the credit.
I think that sometimes God shows us what is actually possible rather than what only appears possible. God created physics, chemistry, mathematics and all the other sciences we put so much store in. But He can override them at will (and sometimes enable us to do the same). – Think about it and laugh even in this present darkness!