Have I done something wrong?

Do I somehow deserve what is happening?

It is sometimes the case that little or no improvement is visible after prayer. Then there may arise a tension in faith, which can go on to become a crisis of faith. Other issues may begin to come to the surface.

At that point it is sometimes said, “God is punishing me”, or, “I deserve what I am getting”, or, “Perhaps God won’t heal me because I’ve been working too hard and not taking proper care of myself, smoking too much, eating either too much or all the wrong things.” Or it may be that friends are trying to help by suggesting that some sin or some backsliding, or a period of irregular attendance at church, may be the problem.

We may need to be reminded that ‘…he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault….’ (See James 1:5.)

Isaiah described in advance what was going to happen to Jesus. (See Isaiah 53:1–6). Clearly, any punishment that is due to us has already been dealt with by God: his wrath against us has been exhausted on the cross.

The idea that God wants to strike people with any sort of disaster in order to punish them is foreign to the New Testament.

Jesus explained that not even a human father would give his son a snake instead of a fish, nor a scorpion instead of an egg. (See Luke 11:11–12). God really does love us as his children.