Adventures in Healing and Wholeness #14 – Healing and Curing

Mark 6:53-56 states that all who touched the fringe of Jesus’ garment were healed, regardless of the disease. While this might imply some sort of magic or supernaturalism, the point of this passage is that God responds to every situation of pain and illness, whether of mind, body, spirit, or relationships. God seeks abundant life for all of us, and perhaps just a little faith, touching the fringe of Christ’s garment, can transform our lives.

Our faith is not omnipotent – not everyone with great faith is cured, nor is illness the result of lack of faith. Rather, faith opens us up to healing energies that might not be present if we did not place our confidence in God. Faith opens us to deeper dimensions of reality in which God and others can be more active on our behalf.

Here we must again distinguish between “healing” and “curing.” Curing involves a change in our physical condition. Healing involves the whole person, most especially our relationship with God and our trust that nothing, not even sickness, unemployment, or death, can separate us from the love of God. From this perspective, a person can be cured but not be healed, that is, still be fearful and estranged from God despite their good health; on the other hand, a person can be healed, at peace and confident in God’s care even if there is no hope for physical recovery.

Today’s affirmations focus on the global nature of healing:
I trust that in all things God is working for good.
God seeks health for me and my loved ones.
My faith transforms my life.

Bruce Epperly is a theologian, spiritual guide, healing companion, retreat leader and lecturer, and author of nineteen books, including Holy Adventure: 41 Days of Audacious Living; God’s Touch: Faith, Wholeness, and the Healing Miracles of Jesus; and Tending to the Holy: The Practice of the Presence of God in Ministry. He has taught at Georgetown University, Wesley Theological Seminary, Claremont School of Theology, and Lancaster Theological Seminary. He is currently theologian in residence at St. Peter’s United Church of Christ in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. His most recent book Process Theology: A Guide for the Perplexed will be released in May 2011. He can be reached for lectures, seminars, and retreats at

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About Bruce Epperly

Rev. Bruce Epperly, Ph.D., serves as Pastor at South Congregational Church, United Church of Christ, Centerville, MA. Prior to coming to Cape Cod in 2013, he served on the faculties and often in administrative and chaplaincy roles at Georgetown University, Claremont School of Theology, Wesley Theological Seminary, and Lancaster Theological Seminary. Bruce is currently a professor in spirituality, ministry, and theology in the doctoral program at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington D.C. He has served as pastor or interim pastor of congregations in Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania. He is the author or co-author of over 35 books in the areas of theology, spirituality, ministerial excellence and spiritual formation, scripture, and healing and wholeness, including Process Theology: Embracing Adventure with God; Finding God in Suffering: A Journey with Job; From Here to Eternity: Preparing for the Next Adventure; and A Center in the Cyclone: Clergy Self-care in the 21st Century.