Although there are so many cases of healing in answer to prayer, yet the incident of the healing of Mrs. Sherman is so minute, and resulted in such a radical change of the physical constitution, that it is necessary to relate it in full detail. It is too well proven to admit the possibility of a doubt.
“ Mrs. Ellen Sherman is the wife of Rev. Moses Sherman, and, at the time of this occurrence in 1873, they were residents of Piermont, N.H. She had been an invalid for many years. In the winter after she was fifteen, she fell on the ice and hurt her left knee, so that it became weak and easy to slip out of joint. Six years after, she fell again on the same knee, so twisting it and injuring the ligaments that it became partially stiff, and, the physician said, incurable.
“The next summer, by very fast walking, one day, she brought on special weakness, which no physician was able to cure. From that moment she was subject to severe neuralgia, sick-headaches, at least monthly, and sometimes even weekly.
In December, 1859, while stepping out of doors, she slipped, by reason of her stiff joint, and fell, striking near the base of the spine, directly across the sharp edge of the stone step. This caused such a sickness that she was obliged to leave the school she was attending.
“Three years after, in January, 1862, she fell at the top of a stairway, striking just as before, and sliding all the way down to the foot. This nearly paralyzed the spinal cord, and caused deep and permanent spinal-disease After this she was up and down for many years, attended by various physicians, yet nothing bettered, but, rather, growing worse. It may be said, for short, that every organ of the lower body became chronically diseased, and that the headaches increased in violence.
“In September, 1872, through a severe cold, she took her bed, where she lay, except when lifted from it, till the night of August 27, 1873. She was unable to walk a step, or even stand. She could sit up only a short time without great distress. The best medical skill that could be procured gave only temporary relief. The spine grew worse in spite of every appliance, and the nervous sensitiveness and prostration were increasing. During the two or three weeks immediately preceding her cure, she was especially helpless, two persons being required to lift her off and on the bed. On the Monday before, one of her severest neuralgia sick-headaches came on. During Wednesday she began to be relieved, but was still so sick that when, in the evening, she tried to have her clothes changed, she could only endure the change of her night-dress.”
It will be seen from this, her utter physical helplessness, and not the slightest hope of any amelioration. During the night of August 27th, she enjoyed a blessed time of communion with her Lord, giving herself, in all her helplessness, wholly to Him to do as he wills.
With feelings beyond all expression, she felt the nearness of her mighty Savior, and the sense of receiving a new and most delicious pulsation of new life. At last, though she had been bed-ridden for twelve months, and incapable of any bodily assistance, she felt an uncontrollable impulse to throw off the clothes of the bed with her left arm, and sprang out of bed upon her feet, and started to walk across the room.
Her husband’s first thought was that she was crazed, and would fall to the floor, and he sprang towards her to help her. But she put up her hands against him, saying, with great energy: “Don’t you touch me! Don’t you touch me!’ and went walking back and forth across the room, speaking rapidly, and declaring the work which Jesus had been working upon her.
“Her husband quickly saw that she was in her right mind, and had been healed by the Lord, and his soul was filled with unutterable emotion.
“One of the women of the household was called, also their son, twelve years old; and, together, they thanked God for the great and blessed wonder he had wrought.
In the morning, after a sleep of several hours, she further examined herself to see if entirely healed, and found both knees perfectly well; and though for sixteen years she had not been able to use either, now she lifted the left foot and put it upon the right knee, thus proving the completeness of her restoration.
“At the end of two years from her healing, inquiry having been made as to how thorough had been the work, Mrs. Sherman gave full and abundant evidence. ‘I cannot remember a summer when I have been so healthy and strong, and able to work hard. I am a constant wonder to myself, and to others, and have been for the two years past. The cure exceeded my highest expectations at the time I was cured. I did not look forward to such a state of vigor and strength. No words can express my joy and gratitude for all this.’
“The parents of Mrs. Sherman also testify of the wonderful change physically which occurred with the cure.
“Before, her appetite was always disordered, but on the very morning of the healing it was wholly changed, and her food, which distressed her formerly,’ she ate with a relish and without any pain following; and she so continues. For years before a natural action of the bowels was rare. From that day since, an unnatural one is equally rare.
“For fifteen years, with few exceptions, she had had severe neuralgic sick-headaches monthly or oftener. Front that time she had been natural and without pain, with no return of the headaches, except a comparatively slight one once, from overdoing, and a cold taken through carelessness.
“There was also at that time an immediate and radical change in the action of the kidneys, which had become a source of great trouble before. Moreover, the knee, which had been partially stiff for so many years, was made entirely well. In fine, her body, which had been so full of pain, became at once free from pain, and full of health.
“The week after she was healed, she went fifty miles to attend a camp-meeting, riding five miles in a carriage, the rest by cars. A near neighbor said: ‘She will come back worse than ever.’ Though the weather was especially bad, she came back better than when she went.”
These are but few out of many expressions respecting her extraordinary recovery, which fully satisfy the believing Christian that the Great Physician is with us now, "healing the lame," and curing the sick. It is faith only, unyielding, which the Lord requires, ere he gives his richest blessing.
The unbelieving one simply sees in it “something strange,” which he cannot understand; but the faith-keeping Christian knows it is the sign of his Precious Lord, in whom he trusts and abides forever.
-Wonders of Prayer
Touching Incidents and Remarkable Answers to Prayer - 1893