Since we have begun participating in the Partnership for Missional Church, one discipline we are practicing on a more regular basis is Dwelling in the Word. This morning in class we were dwelling in Luke 10, where Jesus sends 70 disciples out ahead of him. Among the instructions he gives them are "Heal the sick and tell them that the Kingdom of God is near".
I don't have much trouble understanding that these disciples had the power to actually heal the sick that they encountered. I have a little more difficulty trying to comprehend what that means for me today. I am fairly certain that I do not have the power to heal the sick as the disciples did. As I reflect on the implications of the imperative to heal the sick in today's world, I think one response may be providing access to health care for those who don't have it or can't afford it.
Medical missions to Africa (like the annual trip to Zambia that some of our people participate in), Mexico, Central America, and other places where the people have little or no access to modern health care may be one way to respond. Another is the Community Health Services program operated by Central Dallas Ministries. There are undoubtedly others. I don't know for certain that these are what Jesus meant for today's world when he said to heal the sick, but I'm fairly certain that it is a part of loving my neighbor.