Open Our Ears

Do miracles really happen? …

Last week I watched a young woman around 20 years old suddenly receive the gift of hearing for the first time in her life. This woman has been completely deaf in both ears since birth and had the vocal characteristics of someone who has never heard the sound of her own voice.

The setting was not in a doctor’s office after a medical procedure, but at a worship conference.

At the conference, our VineArts team had been invited to create several large artworks as we poured out our praises to God through painting and sculpting. My friend Lisa began one of the worship services by slowly unveiling one of the artworks from underneath an X-shaped shroud of old rags and bandages, revealing a sculpted clay-colored ear in bas relief. The rags contained various words written into them, symbolizing issues that keep us from listening to and believing God’s truth. Then Lisa added waves of color indicating the beauty of the sounds of God.

After the worship session a young deaf woman approached Lisa to ask questions about the artwork with the sculpted ear. The woman explained that she’d been prayed for many times in her life to be able to hear, and she had honestly become hesitant and uncomfortable about labeling her deafness as just a handicap.

Lisa responded to the woman by saying that her heart is truly who she is, and that she’s not defined by her ear working or not working. Then Lisa prayed for her and blessed her. The young woman walked away with joy, a new realization of who she is in Christ, and peace about her ears.

Later that day, someone else prayed for the woman’s ear to be healed. This time, it was. She felt a pop in her right ear… and she heard.

The young woman ran up to Lisa to give her a huge hug and the good news! Lisa was completely undone. Through many tears and many hugs, she thanked Lisa for showing God’s love to her in a new way. I overheard the woman exclaim as she wiped her eyes and laughed: “Wow, this music is LOUD!”

For me, the best part was watching the young woman at the very end of the evening. She was sitting in the nearly empty, quiet sanctuary as we artists packed away our artwork and supplies. She kept softly clapping her hands next to her right ear in wonder, perplexed and happy, surrounded by a few close friends who just kept hugging her and playing with her long hair, crying and laughing with her incredulously, speaking with voices she was able to hear for the very first time.

I couldn’t take my eyes off her. She was radiant.

Lemme tell you… It was sweet.

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