Friday, August 16, 2013
Miracles, prayer, and God
I have been thinking a lot about miracles, prayer, and God Himself. There are so many levels to all of this. It really is like pulling the layers off an onion. When something like this happens in your life, you can't help but be profoundly changed by it. The healing miracle God blessed Christopher with, turned our world upside down and inside out. Old paradigms were thrown out the window. It was like God cleaned house and tidied up our souls, and we were left with nothing less than a shiny new faith and a deep, intense relationship with Him.
My faith is by no means perfect. Just like it says in the Bible, it is like a tiny mustard seed that God has planted in my heart and is continuously cultivating each and every day. He is growing me up spiritually as my faith takes root, sprouts forth, and begins to grow and flourish. The miracle he did in Christopher was like some special brand of "holy fertilizer" that boosted the cultivation of my spirit.
The really amazing thing is that this "holy fertilizer" is producing fruit for so many people. Family, friends, and people we don't even know all around the world are experiencing a growth spurt in their faith just by hearing about or reading about the healing miracle that God did. The penetrating and heartfelt power of a miracle is mind blowing. What Christopher said about miracles really does speak right to the heart of the matter, "God did the miracle in me, but it wasn't for me. It was about Him, and it was for you!" Miracles aren't just for the benefit of the person who initially receives them. They have such incredible significance that they can impact the faith journey of people who simply hear about them. Now that's powerful stuff!
No less powerful is the fact that we have a direct line to the God of the universe through prayer. Really think about that for a minute. God may be busy with floods, wars, earthquakes, and famines yet we can come and talk with Him at any time day or night with prayers of any kind. Our extraordinary God actually desires the prayers of ordinary people. You don't have to be rich, or famous, or super religious (although He will listen even if you are). You just have to come humbly before Jesus and dialogue with Him. Notice the word "dialogue". Prayer is a two-way conversation between you and God.
Not only can we come to Him, but He wants us to come to Him with everything. By everything I mean everything. The Bible says in Philippians 4:6 Don't worry about anything; instead pray about everything. Prayers of thanks, confession, petition and worship are all welcome. Scary prayers, angry prayers, and joy filled prayers are all acceptable to God's ears. God hears and wants to hear them all. Nothing is too small or too big for prayer because God listens to prayers of all different shapes, sizes, and proportions. Our God is a big God. He can handle them all, and He wants to
handle them all.
God especially loves when two or more people come together with a common cause in prayer and worship. He lovingly taught Christopher and I that as we prayed together night after night for the healing of his holes. It not only bonds believers to God, but it bonds believers to one another. What an unexpected yet wonderful benefit to prayer. We not only get to grow our faith and relationship with God, but we also get to grow our relationships with each other. It really is an incredible truth about prayer. God just thinks of everything! Prayer has layers and layers of beautiful benefits too.
Miracles are powerful. Prayer is powerful, but they are both mere reflections of the Creator. Who can measure, who can really even begin to comprehend, the true magnificence and power of God? The answer is obvious, only God can. As humans we are limited by our fragile, temporary, and sinful nature. We could no more understand the true power of God than we could count the number of stars in the universe. We can't even see all the stars in the universe much less count them. The same is true of God. There are mysteries of His nature that are just beyond our ability to fathom.
Not only is His power unfathomable, but so is His love. God's love is immeasurable, boundless, and infinite. God is love. Everything He does is out of love. It is difficult for us as mere humans stuck in our humanity to really wrap our brains around the totality and completeness of God as love. Human love is flawed, fickle, and fragile. In our love for each other we merely pick at the edges of love. God, on the other hand, is the full embodiment of love. He is love at its perfection and fullness.
Jesus has been teaching me lately about the unique math of His love. God's love doesn't follow the human laws of math as we have defined it. His love ALWAYS multiplies, but NEVER divides. In fact there isn't even room for division in the math of God's love. In the world we live in, multiplication and division are two sides of the same coin, not so in the world of Heaven where God resides. In the world we live in, human love is but a poor reflection of the true love that is God Himself.
The best way I can think to express in human terms the math of God's love is to offer the example of the love of a parent for a child. When you have a second child, you don't love the first one less. The love isn't divided. It is multiplied. The same line of thinking would not apply, however, to other types of human love such as the love between a husband and wife. As it turns out, human love is complicated and full of conditions, whereas God's love is simple, unconditional, and perfect.
If you have never accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you can pray something like this: