The last time I saw Larry, I had recently interviewed one of the most compelling examples of the miraculous I have ever known. Jeff, a young man in my church, had fully expected to spend his life in a wheelchair.
Years of multiple surgeries had done nothing for him, and one of the top specialists in the country had told him to stop hoping for a cure and accept the excruciating pain as it was. Then, at the invitation of a friend, he rolled his wheelchair into a Pentecostal church one Sunday morning. He walked out pain-free. That was four years ago. He has never felt pain in his feet since. At a word of prayer, he was completely, instantly healed.
Curious to hear what a doctor thought, I related Jeff's story to Larry.
Even as I spoke, I felt from Larry's body language that he wasn't convinced.
Larry is a dedicated Christian who takes the Bible at face value when it describes miracles. But as a doctor—and typical of many doctors—Larry is skeptical of stories of miracle healing. He sees many sick people, and he knows that things happen to them that are hard to predict and explain. Some people get worse unexpectedly. Other people get better. You can't always say why.
Larry wasn't denying the possibility that Jeff had experienced a miracle. He was just saying that people sometimes heal in the most surprising ways, that the link between mind and body is amazingly strong, and that he wouldn't put too much weight on the claim that God miraculously healed Jeff.
He also doubted whether the issue was that important.
"Isn't the resurrection of Jesus Christ a great enough miracle?" Larry asked me. "If God raised Jesus from the dead after three days in the grave, and ...1