Sunday, April 07, 2013

Miracles: Delusion or revelation?

Many people , even many Christians, don’t believe we experience miracles today, at least not to the extent recorded in Biblical history.  And if a miracle is reported, it is dismissed as the fabrication of some delusional mind.  But is it?  Are perceived “miracles” really merely just fantasy based in ignorance or wishful thinking?

Or could there be something else going on?  My understanding is that the more self-satisfied, self-absorbed, and pre-occupied we are, the less open we are to sensing and experiencing miracles.  Our minds are closed to God’s direct intervention in our lives and the world around us.

But when things go south in our lives, when we feel not just a need, but a sense of desperation, our minds open up to other possibilities.  Some call it delusion; others, “wishful thinking.”  Miracles are among those possibilities.  Those who dismiss miracles as delusion or wishful thinking do not understand Scripture and how God manifests Himself in our lives.  He  operates the same way today as he did in the ancient past.  In times of desperate need God DOES intervene in real ways to those who trust Him in their desperation – and sometimes impacting those who don’t believe at all.  His intervention need not be merely in the mind of the desperate individual – it may not be just a peaceful “feeling” or pleasant thought.  It may be physical intervention that challenges all known laws of physics or probability. 

It is not “merely” faith that enables the perception of miracles, but certain knowledge that such things are possible.  Those who lack this certain knowledge of the “possible” dismiss miracles as quirks or misunderstanding.   But those in desperate need recognize the miracle event and the Source of its cause and give credit to that Source.

One of my hobbies is radio.  In radio there are physical characteristics of the tuner called sensitivity and selectivity.  Sensitivity is a measure of the ability to pick up really weak stations.  Selectivity is a measure of the ability to separate weak stations from interference from nearby stations or other noise.  Our minds are like these radio tuners.  We can decide what we tune in to.  Are we sensitive to spiritual things or not?  Is our selectivity shot?  Do we allow the competing signals of our  self-satisfied, self-absorbed, and pre-occupied mind to drown out more helpful signals?

I admit, it is more difficult to be sensitive to the Spirit and selective to squelch out competing, less helpful distortion in our lives when things are going really well.  And the danger of getting out of practice of being sensitive and selective to what we take in, believe, and trust until we become immune and blind to what God sets before us.

The danger is that the miracles set before us in desperate times of need can be too quickly dismissed or not noticed at all.  Revelation in the form of miracles is offered us in our times of greatest, most desperate need.  Stay tuned!

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