Many of you may have seen the recent 60 Minutes segment exploring the placebo effect, pointing out the effect of a patient’s thought on their health outcomes. The results of the research were astounding in identifying that placebos are often as effective as drugs in treating mild and moderate depression. Hearing this report was almost as striking for me as the first time I saw on television someone telling about being healed through prayer alone.
Lola Falana (a Las Vegas headliner, Broadway/TV/Movie star) was a guest on the Joan Rivers Show in 1990. Joan asked Lola to share with viewers her remarkable recovery from Multiple Sclerosis (diagnosed in 1987). Lola spoke of being in her doctor’s office one day when he told her she would continue to decline with the disease. At that moment she protested that this was not God’s will and she would not accept it anymore. Through prayer Lola instead grew better. When I saw her on Joan’s show, her movement was natural and full of grace. She eventually left show business and today is an evangelist.
For me this prayerful courage of conviction that God’s will for us is only good can be traced through out the Bible. One such helpful instance is where Jesus instructs, “Repent (change your mind for the better, heartily amend your ways…), for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” Perhaps, healing without drugs is something neither out of the ordinary nor astounding but normal and natural. Certainly then a reason for our hope in every circumstance!