The story of Naaman’s healing has some good lessons for us when the answer to our prayer comes in a form totally different from what we were expecting.
Naaman, a gentile, heard about the possibility of getting healed from an Israelite slave girl. In Rom 10:17, faith, Paul said, comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Naaman heard about God’s goodness and this was the foundation of his faith. So expectant was he that he not only instantly went looking for his healing but also went with money in hand for thanksgiving.
Naaman expected his healing thus: that Elisha would come out calling to God and waving his hand all over the place – like the pagan prophets did with their gods. But Elisha didn’t even step out of his house to see him (perhaps because Jewish people didn’t come close to lepers).
Elisha’s instruction that Naaman should go dip himself in the Jordan, seven times, further shocked and infuriated Naaman as there were other clean waters he thought he could go to for cleansing. 😡 But this process was meant to reveal Naaman’s pride to him as he needed to kill that pride before he could be healed. In fact, he needed to dip himself in the Jordan repeatedly, seven times – a number which Biblically represents completeness…completely killing his pride, completing his healing.
Upon receiving his healing, Naaman could have headed home straight away, which would have suggested that he still harbored resentment from having to humble himself to be healed. But no, he went back to offer thanksgiving to Elisha. Even when Elisha’s greedy servant ran after Naaman, lying that his master had asked for one talent of silver 💰 and two changes of garments, Naaman was so cheery and generous that he gave him two talents of silver in two bags 💰💰 and two changes of garments.
– God knows what we need better than we do and all we need to do is to trust Him, completely.
– We claim His promises not just by reading them but by confessing/speaking them to our situation and doing what they require us to do. With God, it is in the doing that we get to fully/wholly experience His goodness. Joshua 1:8.
– Even when we wonder why we’re going through a phase or the seeming answer to our prayer isn’t how we dreamt about it, we should take confidence knowing that all things are working together for our good because we love God and are called according to His purpose. As long as we stay our eyes and heart on His word, doing what it requires of us, we’re good!!! Psalms 37 😇
– He doesn’t simply just answer our prayers but He’s often doing so much more through our experience than we can fully grasp in the moment; and not just for us, but for many other people through our testimony and how we persevered in hope and with a peace that surpassed human understanding.
– Perhaps, it’s only in retrospect that we can ever come even close to fully understanting all that God was doing. 🔭
– With God we just have to be open minded, walking by faith and not by sight. We should always remember that His ways are not our ways. 🙅🏾♂️😎
NB: Similar lessons from this story can be seen in Luke 17:11-19.