I have been asking for big miracles.
I have been waiting for God to speak into my being so loud that even those around me would at least hear thunder.
I have been looking for evidence that not only I recognize, but that others recognize.
I have been waiting for loaves and fish to multiply and my endless glasses of Signs (another post, another time) water to become wine.
I have been hoping for fruit like the day of Pentecost—when three thousand came to believe.
I have been attempting to live happily ever after—as the framed print on my wall proclaims.
But you see, what would be better is if I asked to see the little miracles.
I started asking Him to open my eyes and make me aware of the extraordinary that goes undetected, unnoticed and unacknowledged.
I have heard his voice, but instead of thunder it is like the roll of the ocean—the gentle and consistent lapping of the water on the shore. Over and over his words wash over me. No one else needs to hear them; they are my words from him, my instructions, my exhortations, my directions. I have attempted to dismiss them as figments of my over-active imagination. As nothing more than my wishful thinking. But I cannot dismiss these words. My frail and fragile thinking could not produce what I have been hearing. I would never think to speak such as that. I am learning I don’t need thunder, and I am accepting that I don’t need anyone else to hear and confirm or approve.
I have watched Him take a meager offering, a limited staple, a ridiculous amount and multiply it exponentially. Recently. In the past two weeks. Not just in one area of my life, but in several. He provided in one place I never expected. Such a minor detail in my life, but He knows the details—details as insignificant and minor as tomatoes.
Fresh, garden tomatoes rival dark chocolate in my life and often in the summer the tomato will win. My husband and I weren’t sure if we were going to be able to find quality tomato plants this year. For the last two years someone very dear has spoiled me with heirloom tomato plants grown from seed. I wasn’t sure that they would have any this year. I was sad.
A few weeks ago my husband came in the house and told me that there were quite a few tomato plants growing in our two garden patches. Let me be very quick to say we hadn’t set any seedlings out this year. We realized that these plants were growing from seed left in the ground through the winter. Our plants produced tomatoes well into October last year, and the last few tomatoes were left on top of the soil or turned under with the vines.
They lay dormant all through the long, dark and cold winter. And then they began to grow. We had over twenty-five plants. Then the dear someone brought me four heirloom varieties. Tomatoes are planted in three places now. More than likely we will have a hundred-fold crop. Exponential growth. And I will share because I have experienced Him taking an everyday, common substance and transforming it into something incredibly rich and abundant.
I have come to understand his Pentecost. In his kingdom it is not the numbers that carry the weight, but the quality of the fruit. My brother, (from the posts White Cadillac and God’s Beyond) came with his fiancée to church with us. I stood beside him during worship. We hadn’t been in church together since he was a tiny boy. Beside me stood this man—all 6’2” of him. A man grown. In church with me. In worship of Him. And the miracle of this washed over me and my eyes and heart spilled the overflow.
Later in the day we sat on the couch together and discussed the fact that Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego’s clothes were not tainted with even the scent of smoke. This was one of my pentecosts. I could feel the flaming heat as the Holy Spirit hovered.
And I have diagramed the sentence on my wall—and realized that it is just a fragment. Not even a full sentence, but a phrase written in the past tense. My life is not yet after. Just as my Father does not want me to dwell and abide in the past, neither does he want me to live only in the after. Now is what counts. Right now. How we live right now affects our ever afters.
If I dwell on the mistakes, failures, regrets and successes of the past or if I constantly contemplate the what ifs of the future then I squander the now I have been given. I want to learn to live contentedly and beautifully right where I am. I don’t want my life to be just a fragment or just phrase.
I want to live a full, complete sentence.
Our minister often says that he isn’t preaching fairy tales. I’m not living one either.
I am asking to see the little miracles. And he is revealing them one by one in an endless parade.