Answer by Michelle**
Do we as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe in healing? Absolutely.
Our seventh Article of Faith reads: “We believe in the gift of tongues, prophecy, revelation, visions, healing, interpretation of tongues, and so forth.”
The scriptures are full of stories of miraculous healings — those performed directly by the Savior during his mortal ministry and during his post-mortal visit to the American continent, and also those performed by His servants. There are also myriad stories from people’s personal lives, from latter-day church history, and from our family histories.
Just recently, we heard such a story about one of my husband’s ancestors. John Tanner had a mysterious disease take over his leg. The doctors could do nothing for him.
He had decided to attend a meeting given by Mormon missionaries, with the intent to protect his friends and neighbors from what he thought would be heresy and to set those young men aright. Their message, however, ended up touching his heart, and he invited the missionaries to his home. By 11:00 that night, he was ready to be baptized. The condition of his leg, however, prevented him from entering water.
The elders asked him if he believed in the power of healing in the ancient gospel. Yes, he did. Could that same power be present now? he was asked. John Tanner discovered that it was. The elder commanded him in Jesus‘ name to stand up and walk. John Tanner describes what happened next. “I arose, threw down my crutches, and walked the floor back and forth, praising God.”
I share that story to illustrate that yes, we believe in healing, and sometimes that healing can be dramatic, instantaneous, and an obvious miracle that others can witness in a tangible way.
But I am coming to understand how the Lord’s healing power can come to us in different ways as well.
I have suffered from undiagnosed, chronic illness for seven years now. It has been a difficult trial. It started when my children were very small. For quite a while, I was afraid I might be dying, and the resulting fear was paralyzing. My heart has ached to listen to my children’s prayers (coupled with the ones in my heart) for another child to join our family, but to not have my health improve enough for that to happen. It’s also extremely difficult to not have answers for what is going on, and to often not have relief from the symptoms.
I have had numerous priesthood blessings that have talked of healing. And yet, physical healing has not yet come. Sometimes I have struggled to read stories of the Savior’s miracles, wondering why such instant, miraculous healing has not taken place in my life.
At a time when I was struggling with this, Elder Dallin H. Oaks gave a talk that has had a significant impact on me. I recommend the entire talk, but will quote one small part of it here. He said:
Healing blessings come in many ways, each suited to our individual needs, as known to Him who loves us best. Sometimes a “healing” cures our illness or lifts our burden. But sometimes we are “healed” by being given strength or understanding or patience to bear the burdens placed upon us.
As I have worked to let go of my preconceived notion of what *I* want healing to mean, I have come to recognize how real His healing power has been in my life these past years. My journal is filled with experiences where I have known that God has been aware of me, known that He was giving me strength, understanding, peace, and patience. He has brought people into my life who have helped me, given me opportunities to serve that have changed me, brought my little family together in remarkable ways.
I am reminded of a scripture where the Lord says this:
And after their atemptations, and much btribulation, behold, I, the Lord, will feel after them, and if they harden not their hearts, and cstiffen not their necks against me, they shall be dconverted, and I will heal them.
And as much as I continue hope for physical healing, I am deeply grateful for the many evidences of healing I am witnessing in my life. I feel they are helping me come to and trust the Savior more, helping me become more converted, enabling me to feel His love and power in tremendous ways.
I testify that you can find that healing power, too, whatever your affliction may be.
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**Please note: The answers in “Ask a Mormon Woman” reflect the thoughts, perspectives, and experiences of individuals. Although here at Mormon Women: Who We Are, we strive to have our content consistent with the Church’s doctrine and teachings, we do not speak officially for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. For official information about or from the Church, please visit www.mormon.org or www.lds.org.
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