“I will declare thy name unto my brethren: in the midst of the congregation will I praise thee.” Psalm 22:22
Who doesn’t in this crazy, ever-worsening world filled with ever-crazier, ever-worsening news love to hear a true story of a marvelous miracle courtesy of the Lord and His amazing magnificence, splendor, love, grace, and mercy, right? I wonder how often, however, we get so lost in the wonder of the miracle and God’s awesome supernatural power and how He bestows it upon His creation that we perhaps lose sight of something just as important as the miracle and giving God glory for it – how those on the receiving end of His miraculous and sovereign grace respond to it. Do we who receive miracles respond with praise, thanksgiving, honor, adoration, love, and worship? Do we respond by telling others of God’s awesomeness? Do we respond by giving God the glory rather than giving it to ourselves and others? Perhaps these responses seem fairly obvious as something we need to do, but there is something equally important that I believe we sometimes overlook. Do we live our lives after we have received a miracle from God in faithful, steadfast, devotion, and service to Him? Or do we receive our miracle and run off with it to live our own lives for our own selves for our own pleasure and according to the ways of this wicked world? When a man contacted me and shared a miracle he had received from God, I was deeply moved not so much by the miracle itself, though it was truly astonishing, as I was by how he responded to the Lord who had given it to him.
Just retired, as part of a reunion of a class from long ago, he played in a marching band in a parade. During the parade, he began to have a heart attack. By God’s grace alone, two of the people in the parade with him had been sent by God. One, an EMT. The second, a cardiac nurse who had changed work schedules at the last minute to be at the parade. She diagnosed him and asked her surgeon boss to get ready for her marching band buddy to be brought in for emergency surgery. Just hours later, the man was in recovery.
A total miracle, right? But what moved me is this. The man, just retired, rather than share with me how he could now go enjoy his retirement with his repaired heart, had written me this: “In two weeks I was back playing with the Worship Band at my church (my favorite place of service),” he wrote. What excited him more than anything about the miracle he had been given was that he could give glory to God and move forward in his life loving and serving the Lord! Is this not a lesson for us all? Should we not respond to God’s lovingkindness by living our lives to love and serve and worship Him through Christ forever?