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I’m too often like a cat living in a palace. What cat ever pondered the brilliance of the architecture or the art that adorns the palace walls? Surrounded by beauty it focuses on the bird perched on a branch just outside the window. It places a padded paw on the pane as it craves the feathered food beyond its reach.
This Thanksgiving let’s give thanks for something we easily take for granted.
Tell someone you believe demons afflict people today and you’ll likely get an eye roll. Except for a few Catholic priests and extreme elements of the Charismatic movement, most people take the idea about as seriously as Santa Claus or the Easter Bunny. Most sound thinking people view demons as the fodder for horror movies and Halloween costumes.
Over the years I’ve seen a couple unsuccessful exorcisms.
I have no idea over the course of my life how many people I’ve asked God to heal. It has to be a lot though. Through the years I always gratefully accepted invitations to pray for the sick. I prayed with sincerity and I believe my prayers accomplished something good. They brought comfort to the sick and their family. They brought God into the situation. And they strengthened my relationship with the people involved. But nobody got healed. At least, none that I’m aware of.
Now days I expect people to be healed and occasionally they are.
I had just finished speaking at a men’s event in the Texas when a man approached and asked if I would pray for him. Josh was 52, stood 5’10” and wore a red racing jacket covered with patches.
“I’ve made a lot of money,” he said. “In fact, I’ve made so much money I couldn’t spend it all if I tried.”
Josh said this with no more joy than a mortician would say, “I buried a lot of people this year.”
“My problem is, I don’t know what God wants me to do with the rest of my life. Should I sell my businesses or keep them? Or, should I pursue something else?”
One day a man named Jaker asked if I would pray for him—he suffered from a congestive illness that had plagued him for years. Before answering his question, I asked about his name. He said his parents planned to name him Joker, but they wrote an “a” instead of an “o.” I considered asking why they wanted to name him Joker, but figured the answer would open too many doors to walk through in a phone call. Instead, I asked if I should call him Jake or Jaker. He said he didn’t care, so I went with Jaker. I think it’s a cool name which I’ve never heard before.