Linda Davies and her boyfriend were in desperate shape. Together they struggled with an $800-a-day cocaine habit. Living on the streets of Seattle and Spokane, Wash., they spent each day trying to figure out how to get enough money for the next fix.
"It was a horrible, empty, broken way to live," says Linda, 41.
Neither had a job. They stole from stores. They stole from individuals. Most of the time they relied on elaborate scams. Sometimes they lost at the high-stakes, high-risk lifestyles they lived. Occasionally, one or both would be thrown in jail.
No matter what Linda did, she could not stay clean. She was still in the grip of cocaine and heroin, even after going through 10 separate treatment centers.
After three suicide attempts she felt her life slipping away. In desperation she entered a Teen Challenge recovery facility where she spent two years. It was here that God set her free from the substance abuse that had tormented her since she was 13.
Even though she was now free from drugs, Linda soon found out she had another giant to conquer. In September 2000, she was told she had tested positive for HIV, the virus that leads to AIDS.
After years of drug abuse and free sex, Linda faced an incurable disease. As far as her doctors were concerned, she was as good as dead. It was time to set her affairs in order and prepare to die.
In the midst of her devastating news, Linda heard the Lord say: "Don't worry about a thing. I will heal you." She believed Him. But how would it happen? It was then that she heard about the Healing Rooms.
"I immediately [went] for prayer," she says. "I pressed into the Lord in prayer, in the Word, listened to healing tapes and took communion daily."
Although she felt tired much of the time, she continued to go to the Healing Rooms every Thursday, believing for more than five months that God would heal her. "I spent years in rebellion. God was teaching me to obey Him, to trust Him," she says.
One of the reasons healing is sometimes delayed, she believes, is because God wants to work His character into our lives.
"The revelation of who God was went from my head to my heart. He made provision for my healing at the cross. He died for my healing," she says.
Linda was able to believe God for her healing, but skeptics might claim she was in denial, that her so-called healing was nothing more than positive thinking. After all, the Bible doesn't record any "gradual" healings by Jesus.
So Linda made another appointment to have her blood tested. This time, five and a half months after her first visit to the Healing Rooms, her HIV was "undetectable."
It was time to make new plans.
Instead of fearing an impending death, she looks forward to a glorious future. "What the Lord has done for me is more valuable than just the physical healing. It is astounding," she says. "The old is dead and gone."