“And immediately he recovered his sight and followed him, glorifying God. And all the people, when they saw it, gave praise to God.” (Luke 18:43)
Let’s give God a round of applause for showing up in a phenomenal manner!
That’s how the crowd responded when Jesus healed a faith-filled beggar. Near to Jericho “a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging,” when he discovered that Jesus the Healer was in the vicinity. Though many in the crowd tried to shut him up and shut him out, he pleaded relentlessly for mercy. “And Jesus said to him, ‘Recover your sight; your faith has made you well’” (Luke 18: 42).
When the people witnessed this astounding miracle, they celebrated what God had done. Who doesn’t appreciate the spectacular unfolding in their presence?
In our everyday world we are much like those ancient onlookers who notice God’s work when it comes dressed in the dramatic. How many times have we missed the miraculous because it showed up in simple garb?
We have nurtured an eye for the amazing and fail to give him thanks for the simple homespun garments that show up through our day without a stitch of effort on our part.
What about the extraordinary gift of clean, sparkling water gushing through our faucets, dumping gallons into our hands? Shouldn’t we express joy every morning when our eyelids flutter open, and we swing our feet to the ground and walk unaided out the room.
A heart in regular rhythm and lungs that inhale the perfect amount of oxygen should be cause for celebration, too. Eyes that distinguish light from darkness; the delicious fragrance of a steaming hot latte; the taste of crisp garlic bread; fingers that can easily draft a contract or script a love note; a soft, comfortable bed to flop into at night; a mind with endless possibilities to create, design, detail. Marvels every one.
“How many times have we missed the miraculous because it showed up in simple garb?”
What would our impact be if we made it a point to celebrate every ordinary, uncomplicated, marvelous aspect? Suppose we fell into the delightful cycle of noticing the incredible splendor around us, and decided to thank God for it all.
How much lovelier would life sound if gratefulness slipped effortlessly from our lips, and joy was the song we rehearsed in our minds a thousand times a day. Suppose we craned our necks, gazed around thoughtfully, and gasped out loud at the inexplicable world we are privileged to experience.
Perhaps the crowds around would follow suit and join right in.
Father, we find ourselves with Hurricane Dorian bearing down on us and our hearts consumed with fear and apprehension. Even in the middle of this mess, help us to be mindful of all we can be thankful for. Keep our eyes open this week to notice all of your ordinary blessings that we usually take for granted. Give us a heart that notices and celebrates your goodness especially this week when we will be tempted to forget that you are right here with us in the middle of this storm.
Elizabeth Karram Mitchell