Thursday, July 26, 2012

Miracles! (Dr. Jim White)

Jim White and I grew up together in York, Nebraska for several years as boys. His folks were associated with York College during that time frame. There are several other connections including his brother, Charles, coaching my brother, Dave, and his York High School teammates to the Nebraska State Class B Tennis Championship in Dave's senior year. Jim has worked at York College as well as Harding University during his professional career. Jim is now the minister for the Southwest Church of Christ in Omaha, Nebraska. Here are his wonderful thoughts. (Aside: Jim was the best WHIFFLE BALL  player ever!) Keep me in your prayers as my time in Vietnam is winding down!

   We certainly live in a promotional world.  By that, I mean that everything is based on consumer reaction.  Every car sales is advertised as “Prices May Never Be This Low Again!”  Or you may hear, “Biggest Sale of the Year!”  Everything is bigger, better, wider, stronger, or massive!  Every year come Super Bowl time, everyone wonders what the half time show will be.  Never mind who’s playing in the game!  We want to know what show is going to be. 

   I even think the children of Israel got caught up in this.  Think about what they saw.  Ten plagues caused Pharaoh to release them from bondage.  They saw the Red Sea split in two and they were able to cross over on dry land while the Egyptian army was decimated when they tried to cross.  A cloud led them by day and a fiery pillar by night.  Water came from rocks.  Manna showed up every morning.  All they had to do was collect it.  Quail was blown in for them to eat.  The walls of Jericho crashed simply by them marching around the city.   And I could go on and on.  By what lessons did they learn from seeing such wonderful things?  In essence, it was “what’s the next miracle….and it better be good?” Even in Jesus time it wasn’t enough that He did miracles for them.  It was the same attitude.  “What are you going to do for us today?”

   We often argue in the church today whether miracles have ceased.  Personally, I really don’t care, because if history is any indication, we would be the same as the Israelites.  I’m not sure we would recognize a good miracle if we saw it.  Unless…..perhaps if we slowed down just a little. 

   When I was a young boy, the United States first began the space program.  I remember when the first satellites were shot into space.  Our family and other neighbors would gather in our front yards and wait until we could see this one small bit of light streak across the sky.  It was our satellite and we would ooh and aah and talk of what a wonder it was.  Could you believe that we were so smart as to send a piece of metal into space and we could see it crossing the night sky?  But the backdrop of that satellite was the vast glory of stars of our own Milky Way galaxy.  In our own arrogance, we missed the miracle of God’s creation.  Because we were so caught up in our accomplishments, we were saying, “We’ve seen that God.  Look what we did!”

   So I’m convinced that if we were to just slow down, we would see any number of miracles.  The Psalmist said, “Be still and know that I am God.”  If perhaps we would do that, we would see the beauty of the flower that blooms.  Jesus told his disciples, “See how the lilies of the field grow.  They do not labor or spin.  Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.”  I see His miracles in the smile of my grandson as he holds his arms up for Papa to hold him.  We should be able to see His wonder in the sunsets of the day, the rainbows after the storm, or the coolness of the afternoon breeze.  Miracles abound!  We just need to slow down long enough to see them!

God bless,
Luke 18:1
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