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Half-stepping toward a miracle

I have an urban pastor-friend who rebukes the tentative faith he sees in white people by saying, “Don’t be half-steppin’ toward me.” We are forever hedging our bets, calculating, playing the odds. Rather than take a full step in faith, we half-step, playing it safe. We want formulas, metric…
By Seth Barnes

I have an urban pastor-friend who rebukes the tentative faith he sees in white people by saying, “Don’t be half-steppin’ toward me.”

We are forever hedging our bets, calculating, playing the odds. Rather than take a full step in faith, we half-step, playing it safe. We want formulas, metrics by which we can measure the kingdom of heaven.

Unfortunately for us, we follow a Lord who refused to reduce the kingdom of heaven to formulas and instead, spoke about it in riddles that befuddled and frustrated his followers. We want to see reality now and instead, Colossians 2:17 says we “see a shadow of things to come.”

You’ll never measure your way to a miracle. In 1995, while ministering in Cuba, after I had preached at a church in Madruga, I saw a lady in a wheelchair in the audience. I told the Lord, “It sure would be great if you’d heal that lady.” I was half-stepping toward a miracle. The Lord replied, “Then go pray for her.”

So I went and prayed for the lady, “Lord, please heal this woman and help her to walk.” My prayer was tepid and faithless. The pastor could see I was struggling and came over to help his poor Anglo, half-stepping brother. He sternly rebuked anything evil that might be afflicting the woman, declared her healed, and told her to get up out of her wheelchair and walk.

In my ever-calculating mind, I thought, “That’s terrible, what if she’s not healed and falls down?”

Instead, the woman got out of her wheelchair and walked.

I may have been half-stepping toward her miracle, but she definitely was not. The lesson for all of us: If you’re needing a miracle, don’t half-step your way toward it. Commit to the shadow of things to come.

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