Near the end of the 2003 film Bruce Almighty, mayhem breaks out in Buffalo, NY. Mr. Exclusive reporter, Bruce Nolan (played by Jim Carrey), answers "yes" to all prayers in his jurisdiction with his temporary powers bestowed upon him by God (Morgan Freeman). Bruce seeks out God for help, and explains, "I just gave 'em all what they wanted."
God responds, "Yeah. But since when does anyone have a clue about what they want?"
Bruce asks, "So what do I do?"
God responds with some of the most memorable lines in the film, "Parting your soup is not a miracle Bruce, it's a magic trick. A single mom who's working two jobs, and still finds time to take her son to soccer practice, that's a miracle. A teenager who says "no" to drugs and "yes" to an education, that's a miracle. People want me to do everything for them. What they don't realize is they have the power. You want to see a miracle, son? Be the miracle."
I believe miracles happen every day. I believe in miraculous healing. I believe that God can do anything He wants, but He does everything according our best interest. A miracle is not always in our best interest, and we may never understand or discover why. We must trust that God knows all the answers.
But I know people whose only life-strategy is to wait for miracles and do nothing while they wait for a miracle to fall out of the sky and into their laps. They tell me, "Oh I'm believing in God for a miracle." Or "I'm just waiting for a miracle."
Joyce Meyer recently said, "Miracles don't mature us."
I happen to agree with her.
Having gone through some lengthy (we're talking years, here) trials of my own, I know now, after the trials, that I would not have grown in faith and endurance if God would have said at the onset, "Aww Kim, I'm so sorry, poof! Here's a miracle to save you from that situation."
I had to change my thinking. I changed my thinking from, "oh look at poor me" to "how can I help someone else."
Many believers want so much to be satisfied in worldly ways. They go through life in a condition of "want." I want this or that. If I only had this or that, I'd be happy.
And often, we misinterpret our "wants" as "needs." Unfortunately, in the Kingdom economy, it's not about receiving, but about giving. And the only way to adapt to the Kingdom economy is to let God work in us first, so that we can change from being takers to becoming givers.
I need to win the lottery, then my life will be satisfying to me.
If your life can only be satisfying if you win the lottery, then guess what? You will never be satisfied. Paul writes: Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. (Philippians 4:11-12)
We must embrace contentment, and learn to live within our means. And becoming a giver means learning how to leave beneath our means through sacrificial giving. Believe it or not, there's a lot of satisfaction in sacrificial giving, and God always makes certain every need is met.
If I get a raise, I'll have enough money to live a prosperous life.
God wants us to be good stewards of and satisfied with what we already have. When that happens, the door opens for us to receive more and in turn, give more. Christ set the example. Christ is the Son of God. He lived in the Heavenly realm at the right hand of the Father. He went from grandeur and wealth to a baby born in a barn to be raised by a carpenter. For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich. (2 Corinthians 8:9)
I'll work hard on my own strength. I don't need God at work.
I think a lot of people think this way, especially in terms of their careers: God will take care of my home life, and my family, and my relationships, and my needs will be met. I'll take care of my job on my own.
God cares about every single detail of our lives. Talk to Him about it. Pray about your career. Pray about school. Discuss everything with Him, omit nothing.
Peter calls us to be holy and prepared: Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. (1 Peter 1:13)
Peter makes no distinct separations. He says set your hope FULLY on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Set your own self aside, hold onto that grace, and look outside your comfortable walls to make a difference.
Miracles? When we reach out, we can expect miracles!
Start small but always grow.
- When you see trash on the ground, pick it up.
- When a neighbor needs his grass cut, do it.
- When you see a need in your community, do something about it.
- If you can help someone you know during difficult times, then help.
Place all hope in Christ.
Be a giver. Be the miracle.