Miracles Happen

"These signs will accompany those who believe...they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will be made well."
- Matthew 6:17,18

Miracles are necessary in this world of darkness and oppression. They are a spiritual law." - Rakesh Joseph 

In Jaipur I met Christians who possessed a unusual measure of faith, what many would think of as childish or foolhardy faith. One day I mentioned this to Rakesh Joseph, who only smiled, and then answered my comments with these words:

"Yes, brother, it is both a childlike and foolish kind of faith that we must have. Every day we are confronted with many impossible situations. Only a little child or a fool perhaps, would dare believe that something good will come. As New Testament Christians we must be willing to be foolish for His sake, and to believe that a God will show us a way where none is seen or seems possible."

And it was true; frequently there seemed to be miracles taking place among the community of believers I encountered, hopeless situations altered, health restored, provision instead of lack, well being in the place of suffering. One experience will remain indelibly impressed on my memory, that of meeting the man doctors had called "incurable."

He was a daily wage laborer who lived with his family in the Garidharipura slum. I had to believe that his life had already been unthinkably difficult, serving in a place where people scrape by on next to nothing. Then there was the accident, and he was left nearly dead, having suffered a suffered a traumatic brain injury.

In a hospital room in central Jaipur, he remained in a coma for months, until finally, the doctors told his wife that her husband would not recover. They needed his bed and weren't willing to spend any more time on a hopeless case. "He is brain dead," they informed his family. "He will never regain consciousness. Your husband will remain in this state for a few months longer, and then mercifully die."

Instead of giving up, the woman asked Rakesh and the other members of the community to come pray for her husband. "Even I thought he was dead," Rakesh told me. "He was laying on a dirty cot, stiff and not moving, not responding to anyone in the room. His skin was cold and clammy, and his eyes were closed tight."

In spite of this, prayers of faith were said, and Rakesh told the man's family that he would recover, "in Jesus' name."

Not long after this, on a Sunday, the man's wife appeared at the church. She was out of breath and obviously excited. Breathlessly, she testified that her husband had opened his eyes and attempted to sit up. He had spoken, and said he was hungry. The family were almost frightened at first, but this reaction was quickly replaced with joy. The doctors were notified. At first, they didn't believe the story to be true.

On the very next Sunday, the man himself walked into the church! He was moving slowly, shuffling. Tears of gratitude were flowing from his eyes. In a soft voice he kept saying, "thank you." His entire family was with him, and his neighbors were waiting for him to return home, to explain to them how such a thing had happened.

Without fail, ever Sunday during my time in Jaipur, six in all, I watched as the "incurable" man and his family arrived at the church. With each passing week there was noticeable improvement. Before leaving India, I had the privilege to visit him and his family in their home (above photo). The story of how he had risen, practically from the dead, was one that had spread throughout Garidharipura.

"Miracles happen," Rakesh told me after we had returned to Gandhi Path, and with a confidence that felt contagious. "We shouldn't be surprised. We are often amazed when they take place, but we shouldn't be, as they are clearly promised to those who pray without doubting. Miracles are necessary in this world of darkness and oppression. They are a spiritual law."

table of contents   

To the Poorest of the Poor; Jaipur 2017   
Josephs International School: a beacon of hope in Gandhi Path   
The Need for Clean Water   
The Clinic   
A Message from Rakesh Joseph   
Photographs: Among The Poorest of the Poor; An Intimate View   

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Attention: Lee Cantelon   
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