My beloved husband arrived home late last night from one of the crusades in the province just as I was having a midnight meal. He joined me, spooning beef soup from my bowl generously. I wasn’t surprised if he was tired and hungry. From overnight prayer meeting last Friday, he went straight to Pangasinan to attend the crusade in one of the towns there, stealing only a few hours of sleep in their home in San Fabian. At some point, he told me of a man in a wheelchair who came to the crusade. Unable to walk, he was carried by workers to the beach where they were baptizing. When he came out of the water, he was already walking. As always, the workers and brethren who witnessed the healing were amazed and worshiped God for the miracle. He said it as if miracles like that happen everyday.
But there was not a single word that came out of my mouth. No, not a sound. I remained bowed before my plate, quietly chewing the bits of meat like I hadn’t heard anything. I heard him alright but my heart seemed to have clamped shut against such news. It was received with an icy silence from me that he didn’t push it any longer.
As the silence stretched between us, I tried to examine my heart. I reached deep in there and groped for what I could find. It was clear as noonday: I could no longer get myself to leap in joy for such news. I lost count of the times I had heard of such in the past 11 years. Until recently, I would get myself to raise my hands to worship God and be awed by such a miracle. At first, I did it believing and expecting it would soon happen to me, too. Later on, I did it because I believed it was the right thing to do. But recently, I just want to remain silent and be true to my feelings.
Have I lost faith in God that he still works miracles to this day? Have I become so bitter that I can’t get myself to praise God for such news of a miracle? Neither. I examined my heart and I found out my faith in God has not waned a bit, neither my love for my Savior Jesus Christ. They are all intact there. I know also that when I hear testimonies in church through the live webcast by brethren who have experienced such miracles FIRST-HAND (for example, a mother who prayed hard for her child’s healing from a scary illness), the Holy Spirit still touches my heart, makes me tear up, and stirs me to raise my hands and give glory to God.
I think that’s the operative word: FIRST-HAND. It should be heard first-hand and spoken not unremarkably. I know I always, always share testimonies of God’s miracles here and on my Minister of Mercy blog, so that’s second-hand for you, right? But I heard and saw them first-hand and when I share them to you, I’m praying and hoping that God will anoint my words and by His grace, touch you by them.
The other thing is, because I have not experienced such kind of miracle in my own life after waiting for 11 years – standing up from my wheelchair and walking at last – I have gradually come to the realization that it doesn’t happen that way. At least, for me. So when I hear of second-hand testimonies of such magnitude (even coming from my own husband), my heart clamps up. And I have decided I will not force myself to react in a way that is not true to my feelings. It’s just not authentic.
When we finally went to bed, my husband told me that my mood seemed to be on the heavy side. Again, I did not reply. I didn’t know what to say. As I pulled the blanket to my neck, I was thinking, How could I explain to him what’s in my heart? No, he wouldn’t understand. It’s better to not say anything.
I am learning to process spiritual things silently with the help of the Holy Spirit rather than react as usual, saying praise words and “Amens!” without my heart into it, just because they are what’s expected of me. Honestly, I’m growing weary of hearing testimonies from faraway crusades of the lame being able to walk again, just. because. it’s. not. happening. to. me. When I was still able to travel, we went to crusades, too, and 100% expected a miracle happening to me: being completely healed and able to walk normally again. But it didn’t happen to me. Although based on others’ testimonies, it happened to them: crippled but walking again. For a long time, I wrestled with God why this was so. I hurt and wept and analyzed why God was healing the crippled that came to Him the first time while He turned His face away from me. Been there. Done that.
Last night as I pondered on these things, I knew for certain I had nothing against the Lord Jesus Christ. I love and adore Him still and always will. So, I began to sing in my heart.
'Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus, and to take Him at His word; just to rest upon His promise, and to know, "Thus saith the Lord."
What. I’m. Saying. Is. This:
I WILL BELIEVE AND LOVE AND FOLLOW AND SERVE THE LORD JESUS CHRIST WITH OR WITHOUT A MIRACLE!
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Journey with Jesus,