It was Christmas Day, 1987, when a drunk driver slammed into the back of a car that Delia was a passenger in. She along with her sister and brother-in-law were driving home from a church service in Toronto, Canada.
Their car ended upside down and though her sister and husband only had minor injuries, Delia, then 23, was paralyzed from the waist down.
Delia was also a gospel singer and though she continued to sing from a wheel chair, she dreaded ministering in other churches, because invariably they wanted to pray for her healing.
At first, she appreciated their efforts but after a while she began despising these services that invariably focused on her healing. She recounts people dragging her out of a wheel chair and then watching her collapse to the floor.
In an interview with CBN, Delia said “I’ve been plopped, dropped and flopped, and flipped to the point where I was like, ‘I just can’t go through this anymore.'”
Then she met Bishop Knox, a speaker at a conference, she attended. They married and slowly her husband began to speak faith into her life. He would even hold her in his arms as they danced around the room at home and say one day they would really be doing this.
In 2010, Delia and her husband attended a meeting being held by Evangelist Nathan Morris. If she had known healing was one of the topics she would never have attended. By this time, Delia had been in a wheel chair for nearly 23 years.
She and her husband were at the front of the church and predictably Morris began to pray for her. But this time it was different.
As he prayed, Delia said for the first time in years, she started believing a miracle was possible.
Pastor Morris sensing the power of God was falling upon Delia, prayed that faith would arise in her.
Delia began to feel sensations in her legs and for the first time in over two decades actually felt the hands that were touching her legs.
Then came the moment she was dreading would she dare to stand. Delia said the years of flopping and falling filled her mind.
Would she swallow her pride and try again? With the help of her husband she stood and then fell back into her wheel chair.
She had to purposefully block the unbelief and doubt that was filling her mind. (Does this mean faith is a choice?)
Delia rose to her feet again and began to walk. She wasn’t just shuffling her hips that some paraplegics do, she was lifting her knees and taking actual steps.
Delia told CBN, “this was actually happening.” God had healed her.
Over the next couple weeks she continued to strengthen her legs and then joined her husband walking in front of their congregation in Mobile, Alabama for the first time.
I found this story very encouraging, because if we are honest, we all struggle with faith. But despite our failings, God will pull us through.
It is also an example of a mistake we often make about faith. People have the idea that faith is a thermostat, the more faith you have the greater the miracles. We just need more faith to perform miracles.
The translation leaves the impression if Peter had more faith he would have continued walking on water.
But is this the right translation for this phrase?
In this verse, Jesus used a compound Greek word “oligopistos” that combines “oligo” and “pistos.”
“Pistos” is the word for faith and “oligos” describes either a small quantity as it is used in Matthew 15:34 to describe a few fish or it can refer to a brief or short period of time as it is used in Rev 12:12 and Acts 26:28.
The word is not used in the literature of the day, so Jesus seems to have created “oligopistos” for Peter’s special occasion.
Remembering that Peter actually walked on water was Jesus saying he had “little” faith or “brief” faith?
Context tells us how Jesus intended this word. Peter had enough faith to walk on water but the waves and storms eroded his faith, causing doubt. He quit believing and started to sink.
Faith does not function like a thermostat, it is more like a light switch — it is either on or off. You either believe or don’t believe.
Our biggest enemy is doubt or unbelief, not needing more faith.
If you believe you need more faith for miracles, that is a form of unbelief.
When a man was struggling with faith in the deliverance of his boy from an evil spirit, he didn’t ask for more faith. He cried out to Jesus “I do believe, help my unbelief” (Mark 9:24).
When Jesus told Peter he had little faith, the Lord added this cryptic phrase “Why did you doubt” (verse 31).