Last night in family prayer my wife gave thanks for a “miraculous event.”
My first thought was that it was a miracle that such event was going to take place, because no one thought it would happen.
Then, I realized she was referring to another aspect, which really was miraculous, and quite a serious issue.
I was going to joke about the event and why it was a miracle, until I realized the aspect she was talking about, and knew it was best to not joke about it.
Where I saw funny, she recognized divinity.
I’ve been thinking about miraculous events since the prayer. Miraculous is defined as:
heaven-sent: peculiarly fortunate or appropriate; as if by divine intervention; “a heaven-sent rain saved the crops”; “a providential recovery” (wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn)
A miracle is an unexpected event attributed to divine intervention. (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miraculous)
I like two elements of these definitions:
- Divine intervention, and/or heaven sent. Regardless of what faith you are, to recognize a miracle is to recognize something given from on high, usually something positive.
- Unexpected. When we expect it we give credit to [ourselves/circumstances/our preparation/others]. When it is unexpected it’s easier to give credit to divinity. I saw this in abundance in Mexico, where people expect little. Even the simple pleasures of life, like a hot meal or a somewhat-comfortable bed, are recognized as miracles, and appreciation is expressed.
To often I see things happen in my life that I credit to circumstance, happenstance, coincidence, or my own efforts. Not to say I don’t work hard to get results, but maybe the results come more as blessings, indeed, miraculous events, than because of ME.
I love the saying:
Work as if everything depends on you. Pray as if everything depends on God.
This gives you responsibility to do what you can, but recognize the hand of God in the results.
In my life there have been many blessings. The big ones have been easier to recognize as miracles.
The small things are easy to discount, forget, and not recognize.
I’m going to try and recognize more of the miraculous events around me – how about you?
I have conversations about miracles with friends. One of my good friends recently converted to Christianity after a life time of atheism. It’s beautiful to see him begin to recognize the hand the Lord in his life.
The recognition of a miracle can have far more impact then the event itself.
Nope. A miracle is something supernatural, something happening in spite of the very structure of the universe. Therefore, I do not believe any such thing is possible.
I do, however, strive to recognize unexpected good fortune, wonders of the universe, beauty, harmony, hidden opportunities, discreet kindnesses, silver linings, hard but uncelebrated work, and unsung heroes. They’re all around us and so easy to overlook; and calling them “miracles” seems to underestimate these by attributing them to supernatural intervention.
Wow! That is a great saying Jason, love it! I just googled your name and found your blog after watching 2 of your classes on PluralSight. Great to see you sharing your faith online! May God richly bless you!