When Jonah was healed, the first few days were a constant battle to choose faith. Every time Jonah burped. Whenever he mentioned feeling kind of tired. As his appetite returned and he had to relearn what it felt like to be hungry instead of slightly nauseous/sick to his stomach. Scattered moments peppered throughout the day that would instantly stop my heart as I mentally questioned whether he was having a reaction again.
And I would have to choose to turn my mind. Choose to remember what God had done. Choose to retrain my instincts and reactions.
God had healed our son. Therefore, that burp was just a burp. Twelve year old boys do that. The rumbly tummy was just a sign of hunger, something Jonah had not felt for months. I needed to feed him a snack, not encourage him to lie down and rest for awhile. Exhaustion was not a battle but a victory of Jonah having spent an entire day being active.
Four days after being healed, as we were beginning to shed our jumpiness, Jonah went outside to play and came rushing back in some time later with a bloody gash on his head. Despite first appearances, it ended up being a minor injury and a couple hours later he and Scott returned home from the hospital with one staple holding the wound together. We joked with Jonah, telling him that God just healed him and we would appreciate him not trying to break himself, especially so soon. But underneath the teasing, we were all mentally shaken. The next couple days Jonah felt sore and achy. He had a headache and his stomach often felt unsettled. Just when we had let our guard down, we were once again thrown into a battle of what we would choose: our fears, or faith.
I didn’t expect the struggle to believe, even after the miracle of healing. I guess, when I read biblical stories of healings or when I hear modern day testimonies of miracles, I assumed that those people, touched by God in such an amazing way, must have gone on to lead hyper-spiritual lives, steadfast and unwavering in their faith. Now, I wonder what their day-to-day life was like after the miracle. How did they interact with their family and friends – those people who had known them for so long as the cripple, the blind, the beggar, the sick, the weak? What questions were they asked by their friends and family? Did they have great answers every time, or did they stumble through trying to find words that were faith-filled, yet still honest?
Seven weeks have now passed since Jonah was healed. I’m not sure when I stopped struggling to trust that he was indeed healed, probably somewhere around week three. The thing is, even though we know beyond a shadow of doubt that Jonah is healed, and our hearts and minds no longer momentarily panic, life doesn’t stop being life. We are still facing ups and downs, questions and fervent prayers that this life of faith requires. There is no big red easy button in faith.
Not even after a miracle.