During a mission trip to Romania years ago, we were holding services in the evenings at a church. We had spent the afternoon sending teams of people out to the villages to pray for the sick and had invited people to attend the service that night. One of the villagers who came was a man who was completely deaf in one ear.
I asked him if he would come forward so we could pray for him. He agreed, and I began praying for hearing to come back into his ear. I felt so much compassion for this man and I desperately wanted him to be able to hear again.
I kept praying and praying. I would stop every once in a while to interview him, but every time he said there was no difference. I continued to pray. I was persistent—I really wanted to see this man healed. I hated his deafness, and compassion for this man drove me to continue praying. I was determined to see his deafness leave. As time passed, I could tell the other people in the room were starting to get uncomfortable. Some of the members of our ministry team were beginning to feel awkward as I continued to pray to no avail.
A nervous laughter began to reverberate around the room as the tension mounted. It’s a little disconcerting to watch someone else try and try for healing with no result, especially in such a public setting. The nervous laughter didn’t concern me. In fact, it made me even more determined. I looked up and said to everyone, “Laugh if you want, but one day I will see the deaf healed!” I wasn’t being arrogant; rather I was carrying a deep conviction that Jesus loves deaf people and wants to destroy deafness.
The conviction in my voice silenced all laughter. I eventually stopped praying for the man because we needed to move on with the service, but several other team members took the man outside to continue praying for him. He was not healed that night, but he was so touched by our prayers and our determination to help him that he gave his life to Jesus.
He was saved because we were willing to risk looking foolish for his sake. When we love people, we risk for them. I was stirred with the love of Jesus for this precious Romanian man, and as a result I hated everything that oppressed him. Because of that, I risked for him. I looked like a complete fool. Even my closest friends were laughing at me and giving up on me.
So did I fail that night? I certainly think not. The man didn’t receive his hearing. However, he was saved, and it stirred an even greater desire in me to see the deaf healed. I have taken the risk to pray for many deaf people since then, and many times I experienced the same frustration I did in Romania because nothing seemed to happen. Now I can honestly say that since my declaration of faith that night in Romania, I have seen about a dozen or more people healed of partial or complete deafness, mostly here in the United States.
Brian Blount - From the Sanctuary to the Streets - Kindle Edition.