Miracles. We can all agree that they’re rare, unexpected and supernatural. And our hearts long to see more of them, because they give us hope in something (or Someone) bigger and more powerful than us.
Personally, I believe “little” miracles happen more often than we realize. I suspect there are more near-misses, crazy coincidences and perfect timings than we’ll ever know of in this lifetime. Only God knows what “could have” happened otherwise. “Big” miracles, though? I’m fortunate to have been witness to and a small part of one, and it’s something I’ll never forget.
A few years ago, I traveled to Mexico with several girlfriends to do mission work with Back2Back Ministries (B2B). The organization has done tremendous work globally to impact the wellbeing of orphans and to care for them through a holistic and family-based model. Having never done international missions, my mind was open to what I might experience, but I was blown away by something extraordinary within our first 24 hours.
Some of the first people we met upon arrival were House Parents for a group of teen boys in the Hope Program (an extension of care and education beyond the 8th grade limit offered by the Mexican government). For the purposes of this blog post, we’ll call them “Jack” and “Mary”. They toured us through their home and introduced us to their family of boys, sharing a little about each boy and how they had each grown and flourished in the program with Jack and Mary leading their family unit. We were overjoyed with their success, but when we walked outside with them, the mood quickly changed to somber.
Jack asked if we would pray for Mary, because she was in pain. Agonizing pain, actually. I don’t know how she kept it hidden. She explained that she had been suffering for weeks and had a few scans already that showed something abnormal in her abdomen. They had plans the next morning to go to yet another medical facility for a third and closer look at this mysterious mass and develop a plan of action moving forward. We could see such love for his wife in Jack’s eyes, and in Mary, concern not for herself, but for her boys. She didn’t want them to worry, nor did she want to manage a huge health challenge that might jeopardize the much-needed stability she had built for them. With all of it out of our control, my friends and I did the only thing we could. We formed a circle, laid hands on her and boldly prayed for medical wisdom and miraculous healing.
As we were working the following afternoon, we saw Jack’s car pull into the lot. We couldn’t resist going to him to see what the findings and next steps were for Mary. Jack had already dropped her off at the house, and he looked at us with tears streaming. “There was nothing there,” he exclaimed! “The scans showed no mass. Nothing! We have no logical explanation, but she is clear, healthy and in no pain!” With that, we ran to the house to hug Mary and celebrate her good news, tears of relief streaming for all of us while we praised God. The doctors couldn’t explain. Mary couldn’t explain. Nobody had reasoning that could make worldly sense, but we all shared a faith that made it clear.
Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness (Matthew 9:35).
Throughout the Bible, Jesus performed numerous miracles, many of which were healing. He gave sight to a man who was blind from birth (John 9). He healed a woman who bled for twelve years (Mark 5:25-34). He made a lame man walk (John 5:1-15). He even brought life back to people who had died (Mark 5:35-43, Luke 7:11-17, John 11:1-44). These are significant physical healings, to say the least!
But make no mistake, Jesus came to heal our hearts and souls even more than our physical bodies (which He healed to display His power and compassion, as well as to reveal Himself as the Son of God).
“He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed” (1 Peter 2:24).
As imperfect people, we can’t help ourselves from sinning. On our own, our hearts are selfish with desires and our souls can’t escape the burden of humanity. We can be healthy physically, but without Jesus, our “insides” still suffer and long to be made whole in Him. Scripture assures us, He heals the brokenhearted (Psalm 147:3) and invites relief for all who sin (Mark 2:17).
I don’t know about you, but it feels like a pretty big miracle to me that Jesus can heal us in ways that nobody on earth can. Yes, He can heal what doctors can’t. Yes, He’s the only One who can love us perfectly. Everyone else will fall short. Yes, He’s the only One who can give us continual hope. Others will let us down. And Yes, He’s the only One who offers perfect eternity. There’s not even a comparison for Heaven with Him! Jesus is incomparable and so is His amazing grace and lavish love that He died to give us. For me personally, it’s the greatest miracle that He would love me enough to save me, fulfill me and complete me. And I get this miracle every single day that I live. And you do too, if you just believe He came to heal you, too.
Heal me, Lord, and I will be healed; save me and I will be saved, for you are the One I praise (Jeremiah 17:14)
Amen and Hallelujah!