I am currently reading The Journey into God: Healing and Christian Faith by Kenneth L. Bakken. It’s one of the books for a class that I’m taking in January, and I’ve begun reading it even though I’m not officially registered yet–it’s a long story. Anyway, it’s also interesting that I should have started reading this book this week, as I’ve been sick in bed for the last tw0 and a half days!
So far, I’ve learned that Bakken has issues with both the modernist medical approach to health care and the post-modernist approach of seeing no objective truth in anything. Other than being a bit of a curmudgeon (I don’t really know him, so that might not be a fair assessment), he does seem to advocate a return to understanding health as a balance between mind/body/spirit, which he asserts can be found in the viewpoint of the biblical writers, and specifically in the Gospels.
Alright, so I agree with that.
The concept that we have the power, or at least part of the power, to heal ourselves, is not new, but asserting that we can combine our self-healing with the best that modern research can provide goes counter to the message that we seem to receive from drug companies, insurance companies and the medical-industrial complex. You never see a commercial about depression or diabetes that says “consult your doctor, and attend a meditation retreat” as part of the pitch. Instead, the pills have all the answers to everything from obesity to overactive bladders.
What if the church became a place where people came for healing? What if we trained our members to bring the healing touch of Christ to everyone they meet? What if we took seriously the command to “heal the sick, and cast out demons” in the name of Christ?
Sounds like a challenge that a church formed in the image of a community of disciples (the “monkhood of all believers”) might be willing to take on…