My dog struggles with a condition called collapsing trachea. It causes him to gasp for air like he’s choked on a bone or a chunk of food. In bad episodes, he will continue to choke for up to ten minutes. And a few nights ago, he started gasping. So I picked him up and prayed over him, pleading with God to heal him. Well, he kept choking.

I got frustrated, no lie. This may be a dog, but he’s my little friend. I’m very attached to him. I’m laying there, petting my dog, trying to comfort him while he chokes like he’s about to die. And I’m terrified that maybe not this time, but next time he’s going to choke, and choke, and not stop. What if he really does die from this condition? Collapsing trachea has killed dogs. I don’t want to lose mine.

And so I’m praying, and praying, and petting, and kissing, and he’s still choking. Poor thing’s miserable. I’m like, “God! Help, please!” And I start crying. My dog’s going to die and the Healer is ignoring me. Then I start getting mad. “God! You said ask and it will be given. You say nothing is impossible. You say pray. Well, God, I pray for healing, not just for my dog, but others too, and I might as well be talking to a brick wall. You ignore me! In the Bible you healed. For others, you’ve healed. But me? Why not for me?” (I’m half-hysterical, people.)

And my dog is still gasping for every breath. I’m still crying. Lord’s still ignoring.

Or is He?

In the midst of my tears, I hear Him say, “What are you so afraid of?”

And in my mind, I see my dog dying from this thing, leaving me alone and tumbling back into the despair of loneliness and depression from which God has used this dog to help pull me out of.

And God says, “Your dog is not going to die tonight.”

I’m so relieved I remember the need to breathe. Then I remember I’m supposed to be mad at my Abba Father. “You didn’t heal him,” I accuse. “You never heal people when I pray. How am I supposed to operate this gift if You don’t do Your part!”

God; “Fear hinders faith, daughter.”

My frustration sputters to an end like a car that’s run out of gas. All of the sudden I understand. Healing is activated by faith. If there is not faith, there is no healing. If I’m terrified my dog’s going to die, well, I’m not really operating in faith. I’m operating in fear. And therefore, I hinder God’s ability to heal through my faith.

And I’m immediately discouraged. “You might as well count me out of this healing business then, God. I’d hate to be the bearer of bad news, but I don’t think I will ever fully conquer this fear thing.”

This is why I love God so much; He says, “With man, this is impossible. But with Me, all things are possible. Place your faith in Me and I will win your battle.”

My dog is still alive, in case you were wondering J

But I did learn a heavy lesson that night. I can’t expect healing if I’m terrified that it won’t happen. So if I am ever to operate in this area that God is calling me to, then I must overcome the spirit of fear that stalks me, waiting for an opportunity to cripple my faith. However, this cannot be done through my own strength. It must be done through God. He can make this happen in my life. He can transform me to where I am no longer hindered in this way. That is fully within God’s power and might. That I can believe without fear or worry.

And that is how I know that there will come a day when prayers of faith will be raised, and healing shall descend.

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