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I don’t believe in miracles – I depend on them

November 13, 2013

My mom had this little saying on the keychain of her van keys. I don’t know how many times we kids read it, as we rode in the front seat on our way to school or the dentist or to church. It was a quiet, simple message. Maybe we didn’t give it much thought then, but the sincerity and the simplicity of it strikes me now. Do we believe in miracles? And, more importantly, do we depend on them? Miracles, after all, seem to show up everywhere in the Catholic world. I remember coming across this enormous book titled Miracles in the Lives of the Saints, which was something like fifty-seven chapters about all kinds of saints experiencing all kinds of strange and wonderful occurrences. Visions, healings, and levitation were just a few. A few odd ones, like talking to animals (St. Francis, naturally) and bilocation (being in two places at once – something parents have perfected) have made me think that being a Catholic saint must be pretty exciting. I mean, don’t we have St. Anthony working overtime finding lost objects? Saints and miracles appear to go hand in hand. But are miracles really such a central part of being Christian, of following Jesus? Sometimes I think we can fall into two camps: either we don’t believe in miracles at all, or we try to look for them everywhere and make them the whole point of our faith. We can be incredulous or over-credulous. Jesus steers clear of either extreme in the Gospels. On the one hand, he not only believes in miracles, but he performs many – healing the sick, giving sight to the blind, and ultimately rising from the dead. On the other hand, he cautions his disciples about seeking after signs, and avoids the crowds who want to make him king simply because he multiplied the loaves and fishes. Jesus teaches us to seek God. Sometimes God does reveal himself in the miraculous, it’s true. So much more often, though, he comes to us in the quiet, in the ordinary, in the messy muddiness of our daily routine, and maybe those are the truly miraculous occasions. Can we depend on God to be there, too?

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From → Musings

One Comment
  1. Debbie Powell permalink

    I think it was: Miracles happen to those who believe in them

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