November 29, 2020

Pastoral Nuggets: Giving Advil the Glory

Brother-Aaron-236x300As you have read these columns from week to week, you have often heard me mention a beloved pastor friend of mine, Pastor Olin McClain. I think Brother Olin is in his early nineties now.

However, he is still in reasonably good health and still drives himself wherever he wants to go. He attends the Troup Baptist Association’s Monday Pastor’s Prayer Fellowship.

While at the meeting this past Monday he told me, “Well, I need to tell you something.” I said, “What’s that, Brother Olin?” He said, “God whipped me good last week!”  “For what?” I asked rather emphatically. (I certainly couldn’t imagine this prince of a man and dear saint of God doing anything indecent, illegal, or immoral!)

He said, “Last week when I was at this meeting, I had a pretty bad headache. So, I turned to Brother Bobby Bozeman, a true prayer warrior, and asked him to pray for me.

After Bobby prayed, I remembered I had some Advil in my car.  So, I went and took a couple of them. By the time I got home my headache had eased.

And I thought to myself, ‘I sure am glad I took those Advil. They did a good job relieving me of my headache!’” He continued, “Then God convicted me of that.

You see, I had asked the man of God to pray for me, and when the answer came, I gave all the glory for my headache relief – to Advil!  And God just whipped me real good for that!”

Ouch!  I think we all can relate to brother Olin!

Somebody once asked me if I believed in Divine healing. I told them that there was no other kind. When they looked at me rather perplexed, I explained to them that doctors can only do “the doctoring.” They can stitch or staple a cut together, or do whatever else needs doing, but they cannot make healing occur.

Only God gives healing. Now, don’t misunderstand me. I believe that God expects us to do all we can humanly do to alleviate and remedy a situation. I believe He expects us to do the possible and leave the impossible to Him.

Unlike Brother Olin, I would have taken the Advil first. When that didn’t help, then I would have involved God! But hey, that’s just me!

How many times have we prayed and prayed for something, whether it is physical healing or something else, only to give the credit and glory to everything other than God when the answer came?

You’ll find a story in the Bible where Jesus healed ten lepers. He told them to go and show themselves to the priests so they could be declared clean. As they were on their way one of them stopped and returned to Jesus to give Him thanks and glory for his healing. Jesus asked a most haunting question when he asked him where the other nine were.

We’ve been blessed beyond measure in this life. We need to make a practice of both being grateful and showing our gratitude for our blessings.

However, let’s be careful not to give the praise for our blessings to the new doctor, the new medication, Wall Street, our boss at work, our pastor, or some other person or circumstance. Let’s remember to be careful to give God the glory – not Advil!

God may choose to use the Advil (or whatever name may be appropriate) to facilitate the healing – but rest assured, the healing came from Him!


Brother Aaron

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