Date: July 4, 2016. This is Canada, so no holiday. Not that there ever really is a holiday when you have a farm! Unless someone gives you a hand!
I was doing my morning farm chores, and just at the end of the chicken feeding. There are numerous pens with different breeding groups and families, as well as single birds needing to be separated for fighting, or single hens who had been separated to get them away from over-zealous males. There is almost always some bird needing a quick fix for a pen, and some of these pens turn out to be something that happens “in a pinch” –they are not made to code, or anything of the sort.
One of the last birds I fed that morning was in such a pen. It had been quickly concocted as an “infirmary” out of a large piece of heavy gauge mesh wire, arranged around posts in a circle. The mesh was strong. Not chicken wire, which is pliable. This is heavy-duty. I can’t bend the individual wires, it’s that hard.
A friend of mine had rigged up a door to open and close, so the hen could be fed and taken out and so on, with a wooden peg to close it. It was very rustic to say the least, but quickly put up in an emergency, intended for a few days, not as a permanent pen.
Anyway, it was very rough. As I was closing the door, I noticed the peg was loose and would not hold the “door” closed. I put a piece of fibre in it to jam it, and as I was trying to force it in place and make it hold, tugging with all my strength, when my hand slipped. As my hand went down the jagged ends of the wire mesh were thrust in between my fingers at full force. I screamed, of course. I am a total wimp for pain, and the pain was unbearable; I saw through tears that the skin was shredded on the inner sides of my index and middle fingers. It was not a cut, it was shredded on both fingers. Blood was pouring out.
My first thought was probably not a nice word, because sometimes I am just carnal. And this was also an inconvenience, as already my mind was jumping ahead to the fact that my right hand would now be bandaged and out of commission for real work, and the day was just starting. And on a farm, there is a lot that has to happen between morning and bed-time, especially if you are working alone that day.
But those were just the thoughts of the moment. Because actually that morning I had been meditating on Jesus Christ, and what it was he accomplished on the cross. That had been my preoccupation for most of the week in fact. I wanted to understand just what he had done for us by suffering on the cross. What had he accomplished? As I thought about different kinds of illness, for example, I saw that he suffered in some way to take it all.
I saw that many things were laid on him. The beatings, the humiliation, the physical pain, the betrayal. I had been thinking of healing not long before this accident. In fact, in the minutes that led up to it. All the types of pain and suffering come under the umbrella of “healing” because of what Jesus suffered for us.
And I was considering that all disease and suffering are in some way, direct or indirect, of the devil. I knew also that Jesus had come to destroy the works of the devil, and this was also what he was doing when he went through what is often called the “passion of Jesus.”
When this accident happened, it interrupted my meditations on the Lord and what he had done. And as I knelt there, almost sick to my stomach from the pain and feeling upset that this had happened, suddenly, something happened.
Time suddenly stopped. Everything became very clear, and it was as if all my life had come down to this one moment. I knew I had a choice in the moment. The whole incident was the very kind of thing I had been meditating on. I knew where this was from. I said:
This is from the devil, and I refuse it.
I said it aloud. I was never so certain and never so clear as that moment. I knew I didn’t have to take this, it was simply the devil putting something on me. And this something was the very kind of thing Jesus had taken for me, so I didn’t have to take it.
As I stood up I felt a bit dizzy at the thought of my shredded fingers, but I didn’t really feel the pain anymore. Somehow that seemed odd, but I determined to just go on and finish the last feeding and then go inside and clean up the wounds and get some bandages.
I went inside and looked for the bandage tape and paper towels. The kind of wounds I get on the farm are not “band-aid” type wounds, I usually need something more substantial. I rinsed my hand under running water. I didn’t see much blood so I figured the water was washing it away as it bled out. Then I quickly wrapped up the fingers and taped the paper towel in place.
For twenty minutes or so I went and did a few other things. Then it started to bug me. Why was there no pain? And no blood coming through the bandage? I waited another ten minutes or so and then I said “this is weird!”
I tore off the bandages…
There was nothing there. There was no blood. No scar. No sign of an injury ever having been there. I kept looking and turning my hands over and over…it dawned on me that I was experiencing the kind of instant miracle that I’d read about in the life of Jesus. It dawned on me that the healing power of the Holy Spirit had just brought about a miracle as in the ministry of Jesus when he walked the earth!
I just started praising God! I was saying “Wow! Look at this!”
As I had no eye witness to what happened, I did get my camera and take a few shots of my fingers, partly because I could hardly believe it myself! Instant healing! Instant and total, with no evidence of anything. My brain was reeling, I was just walking around looking at my hand. I couldn’t say “I can’t believe it!” because I did believe it. But I could hardly believe it!
You can see that wire is not soft! The ends are rusting, but some of that iron is probably from my blood!
The infirmary pen with the hen I was tending when the accident happened. She’d been picked on by a rooster, and needed to grow back missing feathers and just get a break. You can see the wooden peg holding the grate door in place, this is what was causing me the problem.
Right hand; middle finger showing the inside part which had been so badly lacerated just minutes before, now perfectly healed! The opposite finger–to the left of the photo–was also badly injured as the wire ripped between the two fingers. All injuries miraculously and instantly healed. “By his wounds, you were healed.” (I Peter 2:4)
Jesus traded what we should have gotten, and gave us what he had. Our sickness he took, and gave us his health, which was his natural right as the only perfect man, and the Son of God. He exchanged everything bad that should come to us, for everything he had in his possession, including health, freedom, joy, power, glory and providence.
The thing that really still strikes me, looking back at this now, is that I didn’t even speak or pray for healing. I just knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that Jesus had already taken it all when he was on the cross, and that this was just another arrow from the devil–despite my own participation! All harm is really from the devil, ultimately. And Jesus destroyed the devil’s works, again, on the cross. He defeated all the devil could throw at us. If we accept the Lord and know what he has done for us.