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Jim Miller Jim Miller
Recommendations: 29

Ravenous


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She had a friend.

“Don’t call me a faith healer.  I’m no faith healer.  I’m a truck driver.  A servant of God.  You know what happens when you have faith?  You get hurt.”  Jared surveyed the small gathering to see if they were listening to, and following him.  This was one of the weekly meetings at his house---a prayer meeting loosely affiliated with the Three Square Gospel Church.  This was his place.  He had them.


“When I was a boy my brother dared me to put my hand on a post.  Then he took his hammer and nailed me to the post.  Took a hammer and nail and walloped it right in there.”  He holds his left hand up and points at the palm with his right hand   I didn’t think he would do it, so I left my hand there on that post.  You might say I had faith that he wouldn’t do it.  And I was wrong!  I got hurt!  So never say you have faith in anyone, or anything, but God Himself.”  


“My faith won’t heal you.  I’m just a channel.  I just have been blessed with a gift.  That doesn’t mean I’m better’n you that just means I know how to pray right.  And when I pray God listens.  There could be a million proper church folks prayin’ for her,” he gestures to a white-haired lady before him,” and she won’t get better.  “Why?  ‘Cause they don’t know how to pray right.”


“But I do.  It ain’t in the fancy words, it’s in the heart.  You know what happened when I first started prayin’ here?”  He waves his hand vaguely around the room to signify his house.  “Nothin’.  We invited people over who wanted healin’ and I prayed, as good as I could, and nothin’ happened.  But I kept at it and then people started getting’ healed.   I don’t know why, but God does.“


“Now I’ve been asked if there’s a diffrence between believen and havin’ faith.  There is.  Now if ya wanna get healed when I pray for ya, ya gotta believe that I have the power to do it.  If ya don’t believe in me, nothin’ will happen.   Now God’s power flows through me, but I’m the battery and ya need a battery to make things go.  Ya can have all the power there is, but if ya can’t get it in there,” he good-naturedly squeezes a man’s shoulder, “it won’t do ya any good!”


“Now is there anybuddy here who BELIEVES they wanna get healed?”  A sixty-something woman raises a hand.  “What do you wanna get rid of taday?”  Jared asks.  


“I have neck problems,” she volunteers.


“What kind?”


“When I turn my head, I can hear the bones grate.


“Well, let’s see what we can do about it.”  He places his hand against her neck.  “Is this where it hurts?”


“Yes.”


“I’m gonna pray for ya, just as natural as if I were talking to my Daddy.  ‘Cause I am.”   Jared enters into a prayer.


“Does that feel better?”


“No.”


He repeats the process all over again.


“Howa bout now?”


“Yes,” she swivels her head and speaks with gratitude and relief.”


“Ya see that, she believed!”


He moves around the room talking quietly with individuals and ascertaining their problems.  He enters into touch and prayer with all who seek it.  He stops at a couple who seem strangely out of place at at this gathering.  “Bet ya wanna quit smokin’ don’t you.  The big man shakes his head, “No.”  


“But ya need ta don’t ya?”   They stand resolute with arms folded.  “Ya don’t want ta be prayed for, do ya?”  No response.  “That’s OK.  Ya don’t even have to believe that ya will be healed.  It’ll happen anyway.  Just relax and listen.  May I pray for ya?”


The two quickly share a glance, their resolve showing signs of faltering.  Jared grabs the opportunity and reaches out to put a hand upon the shoulder of each and begins to pray for the both of them.  They stiffen at first, and then relax and submit to him.   Jared prays.  When he’s done he releases his grip on the pair.  “God will answer, just ya wait and see.” Jared murmurs.


"Thanks," the big man mouths softly, and absentmindedly reaches out a hand touch him back.


Jared moves on around the room.  The next person he deals with is a newcomer.  “And what da ya wannna get outta your life?”


“I’d rather not say, sir.  Not with everyone around.”


“I see.”  Says Jared.  Well how about we go into the next room and you can whisper it into my ear?  The young man agrees .  Jared then takes him into the kitchen, and listens.  “Come back around seven o’clock and we’ll see if we can get rid of those for ya.”  He smiles and winks.  “Just bring yourself.  That’s all that ya need.”


As they return to the living room Jerad sees that the next one is going to be a “tough sell”.  A retarded teen is sitting in the chair, is non-verbal, and has a wash rag stuck in his mouth to catch the drool.


“The doctors say they can’t do anything more for him.  Can you help him?”  


I assume yore his mama, Mrs_____?  


“Hayes,” she answers for him.


“And his name?”


“Curtis.”


Jared centers his attention on Curtis.  “What’s wrong with him?”


“Well, he’s just collapsing in on himself.  He won’t have anything to do with any one.”


Curtis makes a repetitive gesture with his right hand just before himself, as if he were raking away cobwebs.   “Curtis?” Jared calls.  No response.   “Curtis?  What’s this mean?” and Jared mimics the gesture.   He catches Curtis looking.  “He sees something in the spirit world that he doesn’t want to see.”  Jared ventures.  He’s trying to brush it away.  The spirits are binding him, but God can release him.  Jared again “plays” the ‘claw game’ with Curtis, and they mimic each other.  “I’ll pray for him Jared says, and he does. But Curtis has found a play mate, and he doesn’t shut his eyes.  He watches the face of the man that plays with him.


“Thank you” his mama says.  He hasn’t shown such interest in a long time.”  Curtis releases a long pent up moan.


“Ya just bring him back here to me if ya want me ta pray for him some more.”


“Now let’s all have somethin’ to eat!  Just follow Juanita over there.  The ladies have worked hard for us to have somethin'.


“Mr. Townsend,” a well-meaning lady steps up to Jared, “I’d like to give you something for your ministry.  Here.”  She hands him a check.


Jared smiles in return and thanks her for supporting him.  


“All in a day’s work,” Jared congratulates himself.  “All in a day’s work.”


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