Healing Line

Healing Line

Heart to Heart

by Francis MacNutt
Nov/Dec 2003

From time to time when we are ministering to people who have come forward for prayer, the person for whom we are praying will suddenly fall to the floor and then roll on his or her side in a fetal position. That individual may cry out something like, "I'm not going to come out. I'm not going to be born!" When this voice comes from a 40–year old man, it is always startling, although we have seen this happen often enough.

The most likely explanation is that something went wrong way back in the womb, and we need to pray and ask Jesus to help him be "born again" in this particular way, And it does happen.

When Judith and I were writing Praying for Your Unborn Child, we found that infants in the womb seem to sense whether they are loved (especially by the mother), or whether they are rejected. If parents are ambivalent about whether or not they want the child, the infant also seems to be able pick up on that. This love — or its absence — seems to equip the child with a healthy sense of his or her existence in the world or with a feeling of being a mistake. We have prayed for many adults whom the Lord has healed of this deep sense of rejection.

The late Dr. Frank Lake, a British Christian psychiatrist, wrote that, in his experience, the most dangerous time in our lives for developing a deep tendency towards psychosis is during our first three months in utero!

Now this is a deep mystery, for we know that the brain isn't formed in those early weeks of our lives. Therefore, the infant in those early weeks is riot yet able to receive thoughts or ideas, so it seems impossible for all this to happen.

One possibility, though, is that even before our minds are fashioned in utero — and forever afterwards — our hearts (our spirits) are able to know and experience love long before we can process ideas. If Jesus placed such an emphasis upon loving one another, and if receiving love is so important to our happiness, it makes sense to believe that our spirits (our hearts) can both give and receive love from the very beginning. (Recently, many scientists and psychologists have begun to think in these terms).

I personally believe that when there is an atmosphere of true Christian love in a meeting ("where two or three are gathered together in my name" — Matt. 18:20a), sick people begin to be healed even before anyone has a chance to pray for them. It's not just a matter of saying the words ("let's agree together on this prayer") but of people having heartfelt, sacrificial love for each other that ushers in a strong presence of Jesus—which in itself is healing. People don't even want to leave the room (or the church) when they feel his presence.

As I said in my article last month, our main desire should not be merely to receive the ministry gifts, such as the gift of healing, but to experience the fruit of the Spirit, such as love, joy, and peace. We /should not only desire the gifts demonstrating God's power, but we should yearn to be like Jesus: "I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me" (Gal. 2:20a). Not only will love intuitively communicate itself to everyone, but it will also heal.

Francis and Judith
with Rachel and David

Francis MacNutt Francis MacNutt is a Founding Director and Executive Committee member of CHM. Nov/Dec 2003 Issue