By Femi Aribisala
It is to my discredit that, in order for the Lord to attract my attention, I had to be shot by armed robbers. The bullet pierced the body of my car and buried itself in my left leg. Nevertheless, the Lord said to me: “Femi, there is nothing wrong with your leg.”
The doctors told me different. An x-ray showed the bullet had splintered a bone. They said only after the injury had been dealt with would they bother with the bullet. Therefore, the wound was treated and my leg encased in a plaster-of-Paris. Thereafter, I had to walk with a pair of crutches.
One morning, I found myself standing in front of a television showing the film “Leap of Faith,” starring Steve Martin. Significantly, the very episode on the screen spoke directly to my situation. I saw a boy, with crutches exactly like mine, at a healing service. He dropped his crutches and started to walk by faith. His gait was unsteady at first. But gradually, it got better and better until finally, he walked normally and even started running.
I knew the Lord was sending a message to me. But, as usual, I was a bit slow on the uptake.
Some days later, I went to the Lord in prayer to thank him again, for the umpteenth time, for delivering me from armed-robbers. Out of the blue, he said to me: “Femi, I allowed you to be shot because I wanted you to see yourself using crutches. You have been using crutches all your life. I decided to show it to you physically otherwise you would never know.”
Then he asked me: “Can a man walk properly with crutches?” I answered: “No.” He continued: “That is what you have been doing. You have been trusting in chariots and in horses. Now listen to me Femi, put down your crutches and walk.”
“But my leg is broken,” I protested. “No,” he said, “there is nothing wrong with your leg. It is not about your leg. It is about your faith. I want you to walk by trusting in me, without using any crutches whatsoever.”
That was the end of the prayer session. I was so overwhelmed; I needed time to process what he just told me. I did drop my crutches, but I could not walk. I just hobbled about on one leg in my bedroom.
Jesus said: “For judgment I have come into this world, that those who do not see may see, and that those who see may be made blind.” (John 9:39). The more I thought about it, the more I realised my “crutches” were precisely those things I thought gave me an edge. They were my pedigree; my educational background; my presumed intelligence and, at that time, my buoyant finances.
But how could I comfortably drop such “crutches” and walk confidently without them?
A couple of weeks later, the Lord told me again that my leg was not broken. He said: “Femi, put down your crutches and walk.” I obeyed but could not walk. But that did not bother me anymore. Since the Lord said I was alright, I knew I was healed. Like a little child taking his first faltering steps, I understood I had to learn to walk all over again. But this time, it would have to be by faith in God.
However, when I announced to my relatives and friends that Jesus had healed my leg, nobody believed me. Why would they believe when I was still using my crutches? With nobody prepared to validate my healing, I decided to go for an x-ray. My brother, Biodun, is a medical-doctor. He gave me a prescription which I took to an x-ray center.
When I got the result, I was heartbroken. The x-ray showed the bone was still broken. Biodun rubbed salt in the wound by giving me calcium tablets to facilitate the healing. He said, in his professional opinion, my leg would take nothing less than another eight weeks to heal.
I saw him again exactly one week later. When his father-in-law asked after my broken leg, I affirmed it was healed in Jesus’ name, but complained that these doctors (including my brother especially) were trying to confuse me. Biodun laughed derisively at me. He said: “If you are so convinced you are healed, why don’t you have another x-ray?”
Later that day, I thought again about what he said. I was just learning then to discern the voice of God. I thought: “Why would Biodun tell me to have another x-ray when he does not even believe in divine healing?” I concluded it was not Biodun who was talking to me. It must have been the Lord talking through him. So, I decided to have another x-ray that same day.
When I got to the x-ray center, the attendant insisted I needed a doctor’s prescription. I told him if he checked his notebook he would discover I had been there the week before with a doctor’s note. “There was something wrong with that x-ray,” I insisted. “That is why I have returned.” After some reluctance, he told me to go and sit down. He would call me when it was my turn.
It took roughly forty-five minutes for me to be called for my x-ray. Those forty-five minutes were some of the most dramatic in my life. As soon as I sat down in the waiting-room, someone, an invisible person, started molding my broken leg. I was not imagining it: it was real. It went on non-stop for the entire duration of my wait. To use a tired cliché, it completely blew my mind.
Let me try to put this in some perspective. There I was, a man who had lived by my wits all my life. I did not believe in ghosts. For me, “seeing is believing.” And yet someone invisible was physically working on my broken leg. Moreover, he was doing so in a manner no human-being could have done; from the inside of the plaster.
I sat there looking at the faces of the people in the waiting-room. I asked myself: “Do people really know this kind of thing is possible?”
After forty-five minutes, I was called in to do the x-ray. The result was a foregone conclusion. It fulfilled the prophecy spoken by the Lord to my wife through my own lips at the time of the armed-robbery attack: “There is a bullet in my leg; but there is nothing wrong with my leg.” Hallelujah!
Today, I have two x-ray momentos at home, readily available for inspection by all-comers. Both of them came from the same x-ray center in Ayinde Giwa Street, Surulere, Lagos. Both are signed by the same man: O.O. Sanusi. These x-rays are dated only seven days apart. The one shows a broken bone in my left leg: the other shows a completely healed leg.
“Sing, O heavens, for the LORD has done it! Shout, you lower parts of the earth; break forth into singing, you mountains, O forest, and every tree in it! For the LORD has redeemed Jacob, and glorified himself in Israel.” (Isaiah 44:23).