Obsolete Faith, and Miracles

We live mostly a safe faith life here. We attend church, we “fellowship” (A.K.A. BBQs with our friends during the summer), and we pray memorized prayers before meals. We don’t really want anything radical to happen. We’d prefer to keep our nine to five jobs, driving about here and there, hiding the hurt inside us, and blending in with the world around.

When someone speaks of miracles, the first thing we tend to think is that happened before, but this is now. Things are different now, we say, God doesn’t “move” that way any more. Miracles, we have, for the most part, considered obsolete. Huh? Obsolete? Well it appears to me that way, at least how it appears in our lives.

So, if we consider miracles obsolete, what do we consider faith? I believe that we believe that faith is different now too. We don’t take the stories to be examples of what can happen today. It’s my conclusion that we consider that kind of radical, inspiring faith to also be “obsolete.”

Regardless of this, I’d like to suggest something. I believe that miracles aren’t obsolete. But I believe they will be until we re-evaluate our faith. That’s because miracles happen because of faith. Take for example all the miracles that happened after the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew.

When Jesus heard this, he was surprised and said to the people following him, “I tell you, I have never found anyone in Israel with faith like this.  Then Jesus said to the officer, “Go home, and what you believe will be done for you.” And the officer’s servant was healed that very moment. (Matthew 8:10, 13 GNT)

…where some people brought to him a paralyzed man, lying on a bed. When Jesus saw how much faith they had, he said to the paralyzed man, “Courage, my son! Your sins are forgiven.” (Matthew 9:2 GNT)

Jesus turned around and saw her, and said, “Courage, my daughter! Your faith has made you well.” At that very moment the woman became well. (Matthew 9:22 GNT)

When Jesus had gone indoors, the two blind men came to him, and he asked them, “Do you believe that I can heal you?” “Yes, sir!” they answered.  Then Jesus touched their eyes and said, “Let it happen, then, just as you believe!”— (Matthew 9:28, 29 GNT)

Miracles are the result of faith. When faith is happening, the miracles also happen. However, miracles are not the result of “obsolete” faith, they are the result of that radical faith that scares us here in North America. We’re scared of it because we’ve never experienced it. Faith like that is unknown and distant for us.

That’s the danger of the type of life that we live here in North America. We don’t really need miracles. We supply our needs for ourselves. For someone in a third world county, or even someone who lives on the street here, having faith means believing that God will supply the next meal, or pay the bill, or heal a relative dying of what we would consider a treatable disease. We don’t worry about that kind of stuff, so how then, do we have faith? How do we have that radical and real connection with God?

I think the answer is just simply just exercising it. For some, it may simply mean just praying for healing and believing that change is going to come, without doubting. For others it might mean going without certain amenities and trusting God to provide. If we truly believe He can, He will.

For example, in the book, The Practise of the Presence of God, Brother Lawrence suggests that when human remedies fail, it may mean it’s because God is the one who wants to do the healing.

You should discontinue human remedies and resign yourself entirely to the providence of God. Perhaps He waits only for that resignation and perfect faith in Him to cure you. Since, in spite of all the care you have taken, treatment has proved unsuccessful and your malady still increases, wait no longer. Put yourself entirely in His hands and expect all from Him.

So join me in a quest to deny common sense, and defy the “obsolete faith” that’s being exercised by so many today. God calls not to an upgrade but to a reboot. We’re limiting what He wants to do through us. We are called for so much more, wouldn’t you agree?

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