I had just had a great cup of coffee and a good catch-up with one of my close friends, an honorary member of My Band Of Blokes. I always leave invigorated and thoughtful. And today was no exception.
As I slowly walked (thanks to sciatica) home, I approached a very small car, the size of which will become significant soon. A lady approached the car in a wheelchair. I was going to say she was an older lady, but then realised that she is probably about my age. She wrestled the drivers door open and heaved herself from the chair into the car. I paused. As I was about to walk past the car, the woman pushed the back of the drivers seat back, so that she would be almost lying flat. I realised that she was about to heave the wheelchair over herself and onto the passenger seat. I thought carefully. These situations can be tricky.
“I don’t mean to insult you, but would you like some help?” She smiled. “I’m not insulted, and some days, I appreciate the help, but today, I’m fine, thank you.” I smiled. “Then, in that case, I will continue walking, feeling inspired.” When I mentioned it to my daughter, she told me that the woman goes swimming, heaves herself out of the pool and onto her waiting wheelchair. She swims faster than my daughter, all with upper body strength. I’m impressed.
I had barely crossed the road, when the whisper I have come to know and love, asked a very pointed question: “So, which miracle draws more attention to me (God)? The miracle of supernatural, instantaneous healing? That, quite frankly, is often forgotten within days? Or the miracle of somebody exhibiting supernatural courage and grace as they face the challenges of every moment of every day?”
If there is a correct answer, it is probably, “Both/and.” And please, do not misunderstand me. I am not suggesting for even a second that we shouldn’t be believing in miracles, or even praying for them. I’ve seen enough to know that miracles, whatever shape they come in, give My Great Papa bucketloads of credit, and inspire faith and confidence in him to do it again. But I wonder – that’s all – whether we underestimate the stories of those who are never healed, but exhibit the same faith and confidence in God by their courage and resilience in the face of adversity?
Speaking for myself, I am inspired by those close to me, and those who are strangers, who have no faith or bucketloads of faith, who face their challenges with courage and resilience. And my faith is lifted and injected with new life – yes, with the way they deal with their lives, but also when I see and hear stories of Papa’s supernatural interventions in the lives of others.
It is often not what you are looking at, but what you see and the way you see it.