Christian Short Stories
A Healing Touch
By Katherine Payne Ostrom
Katherine writes: I'm an Asian American female, age 58, married with 4 grown daughters. I enjoy expressing my thoughts through poetry and short stories.
Ring. Ring. I pick up the telephone.
A familiar voice greets me. "Kathy, how about attending a revival tonight? A friend of mine wants me to pick her up around six thirty. I can get you along the wasy."
"Oh Mary. I broke my right middle finger over the weekend playing volleyball. It's in a cast."
She laughs stating, "You broke your finger! But you feel alright, don't you? Aw, come on gal, get out of the house. Ted won't mind. I'll pick you up around six o'clock." Click, and a dead dial tone.
Mary knew I face lonely hours while my husband works at a local fabricating plant until eleven o'clock p.m. I had no alternative but to reluctantly take a quick shower, and change into 'dressier' attire.
Mary honked her weather beaten van's horn around six fifteen. Climbing in the passenger's side I seated myself, double checking my safety belt buckle. Furiously, she drove ignoring all speed limit warning signs. Upon reaching a modest brick house I silently breathe a sign of relief. A beautiful dark tan woman warmly greets us. Assembling ourselves in Mary's vehicle we exchange names, and discuss directions to reach a neighboring Pentecostal church.
The service started at seven. We three scurry to front row seats. A handsome man introduces himself as a pastor. Nodding his head Shasta explains she invited us. He smiles, shaking our hands. Calmly he states, "I hope you enjoy the meeting."
I felt uneasiness as seats began filling up. Feeling very uncomfortable, I nudge Mary's ribs whispering, "Did you know this church is all black?"
"No, I didn't. Shasta is half black though."
"Well," I answer, "The worst they can do is ask us to leave or run us out."
I sense every eyeball on us as the pastor spoke the opening statement. "We are pleased to have you come tonight for this special occasion. We welcome each and every one of you. You know with God Almighty all things are possible. He knows everything that happens in our lives. We don't know why these visitors came to this meeting. But God knows their circumstances and why they are here. The Lord knows no racial barriers. He welcomes all people in the body of Christ. He has no preferences. And this church is a God fearing and Holy Spirit filled church of God. Please make our visitors welcome. Give them a round of applause."
A meek sound followed.
With enthusiasm, the choir delighted the audience singing in updated blues tempo. Clothed in beautiful navy satin robes they sway rhythmic to chords of popular religious hymns. Captured by divine sounds I thought, "Man, the angels in heaven couldn't be better!"
After listening to the guest speaker's message, I could not question God's Holy presence. Passionately he spoke of the Holy Spirit; why we must not doubt it; why we must trust and believe in it. If we believe in the Lord we had to believe in the Holy Spirit. Our lives could prosper; we could even be healed because that Spirit lives in us. When he closed the sermon, asking for the congregation to come forth for a blessing or healing, I did not hesitate.
Upon the stage I heard him ask, "Do you believe Jesus died on the cross for your sins?"
I reply, "I do."
"Do you believe in the Holy Spirit?"
"What do you wish for me to pray for you?"
I point to my cast. "I have a broken finger. It bugs me. I ask for healing.”
He smiled, placing one hand on my forehead and another hand on my shoulder. He shouts, "In the name of Jesus heal this woman's finger."
Immediately, I experienced God's power and fell backwards.
Walking back to my seat I thought I could dance on cloud nine. Never before had I experienced an impact of inner happiness and peace, basking in this self satisfaction emotion shakes me. Sitting in my chair, the pastor boldly asked for confessions. I sprang to my feet, removed my finger cast, and shouted, "I'm healed. When I came tonight I had a broken finger from playing volleyball. But after hearing God's message I know I got healed."
Several people surrounding me jumped up clapping their hands, glorifying God with 'Praise the Lord'; 'Hallelujah'; and 'Bless you God.'
I know in human reality praying for a broken finger is not an in thing to do. But I realized a powerful lesson that special night. So what if I derive from an Asian American bloodline? So what if I got healed in a black congregation? As the pastor stated, "The Lord knows no racial barriers. He has no preferences."
I truly believe this can apply anytime, anywhere to anybody.
(© 2010 Katherine Payne Ostrom – All rights reserved. Written material may not be duplicated without permission.)
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