By R.E. Olsen
Miracles are not defined all that well. Also, the word is overused in some contexts and glossed over in others.
What are little miracles?
Little miracles are ordinary events, amazing and beautiful, yet they happen every day.
What are big miracles?
When one occurs and it is known, then people outside its immediate impact are affected by it.
A child being born is an ordinary every day miracle that profoundly affects a family.
A rotting corpse that comes alive and resumes his or her life as if nothing had happened makes more of an impact; and if verified and documented in the Journal of American Medicine, it would have global consequences.
In the past, some ordinary things were seen as miracles and today are not.
Lightning is one of them. Big, loud, powerful, it kills, starts fires; yup, easy to confuse it with something from someone up above. We still do not know much about lightning scientifically, but we now see it as an ordinary predictable event. We can even direct it to some extent.
Are there any big miracles that we can see?
Magnets are small; their properties are measurable, predictable. They fit in your pocket and are as fascinating to an old person that has considered them his entire life as to a young child playing with them for the first time. It is important for the old not to tell the young that naming one end of the magnet a north pole and the other end south, or other ideas they may put forth, in any way means we know why and how they pull and push. We do not. No one does. No one knows what is going on and probably no one ever will. The answer is simply, magnets do what magnets do. Still it seems magnets are not miraculous; they may be but I am not sure.
Existence is something else. It meets the undefined and indefinable criteria for being miraculous, if for no other reason than many people fret over it continuously. Endless rounds of study and discussion that do not get very far are occurring every day all over the world.
People looking at the stars, measuring stuff, thinking real hard and vying for grants today generally agree that at one time things did not exist, and then things did.
This is big. It is a big idea and a big miracle.
Some things are alive. This too is a big miracle. People that observe and consider life say that at one time there was no life; then there was life. This is not happening now. Non-living things are not becoming living things. It happened long ago, this inception of life, and only life has been begetting life for a long time since.
Some living things are aware they are alive. This is crazy when you think about it. How can this be? Is it because they have a soul? Now we’re venturing into the supernatural. Anything that does not have mass or weight, or take up time and space, is not natural – thereby it is supernatural.
We could say that genuine miracles are the supernatural works of God – meaning that they transcend what is normally perceived as natural law; it is something that cannot be explained by any natural basis.
God is not a mere word in a book on a dusty shelf. He is alive and all-powerful. He intervenes in the created natural order with miracles from time to time for a variety of reasons.
God performed the greatest miracle of all time in coming to earth as the man Jesus Christ to die on the cross for our sins (Romans 5:8) so that we could be saved (John 3:16).