patty kirk

patty kirk lying down, getting up, sitting at home, walking down the road doing deuteronomy 6:7

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

healing stories

I love the stories of Jesus’ healings. The specificity of the ailments. A shriveled hand. A spirit that tosses a boy into the fireplace. People with sores and paralysis and a guy so depressed he tears at himself with rocks.

And Jesus’ interaction with these sick ones is so alarming. When Simon’s mother-in-law (Peter did have a wife!) had a high fever, Jesus “bent over her and rebuked the fever, and it left her” (Luke 4:39 NIV). He sticks his finger in a deaf guy’s ear. Rubs spit mud in a guy’s eyes. Tells a woman who’s had her period and been secretly unclean for twelve years to explain the nature of her issue to him in front of her neighbors.

“Stand up in front of everyone,” he commands the guy with the withered hand (Mark 3:3). And then “Stretch out your hand” (Mark 3:5).

(Which, reading it now—forgive me—reminds me of Jodi Arias’s defense attorney telling her to hold up her broken finger for the jury to see.)

And the people watching complain and doubt—one whose authority? and what, he’s working on the Day of Rest?!—and Jesus gets enraged. “He looked around at them in anger and, deeply distressed at their stubborn hearts” (Mark 3:5).

And I’m thinking, what good stories! I want my students to write stories with so much happening! So concrete! So much conflict!

And then the miraculous result:“He stretched it out, and his hand was completely restored” (Mark 3:5).

And no, I didn’t make a mistake. One numbered verse, Mark 3:5, contains all that rage and commanding and stretching and restoring.

Best stories in the world. I mean.


  1. I accept as truth that we find what we look for. If I look for good, I find it - if I look for bad, I find it. If I look for evidence that God is a myth, I find it. If I look for evidence that God is real, I find it. It can be so hard to bear people who interpret everything as evidence that there is no God. I imagine that they have trouble bearing with me, too. I remember when I made the choice to look for truth in the Bible - I found it in abundance.

  2. You evidently believe I think the Bible's a myth because I like how convincingly it's written. Not so. I also believe God is real and that what's in the Bible is true.

  3. ???! - That was not directed at you. I post a bunch on Facebook and there are a few people I find hard to bear. It has been heavy on my mind in recent months.