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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
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.

Comments (2)

  • We’ve been half-steppers. God wants to change that!

    Our son’s best friend was healed of his gluten intolerance (celiac disease) after friends prayed over him. The tests just came back negative the other day.

    Well, my husband told me to schedule a hip replacement for him this winter…I could tell it was time too, the pain the night before last seemed much worse. X-rays show he’s bone on bone.

    Yesterday as he was working he just cried out to God and said, “If it’s your will, Lord, to heal me, do it NOW….I want to be more effective for You.” He then proceeded to walk up a hill and when he got to the top he realized he didn’t drag his leg! He actually had bounce in his step! When he got home he sat on the bed and showed us that he could put his knees together…something that he couldn’t do for years even when he was pushing with all his strength with his hands! I asked if he had any pain and there was still a twinge up on top so we called all the kids and my son’s best friend into the room and we all layed hands on him and asked God to finish up the job! At that point my daughter (who is also gluten intolerant) was crying and asked if we’d pray for her too! We were on a roll!

    Time will tell about our daughter. But God is showing Himself to our family in a way that we need right now. How great is our God!

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Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.



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