To See the Extraordinary

rainbow stars“Jesus did many other things as well.  If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written.” John 21:25

When we read the gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, we are amazed at the record of Jesus’ miracles and wonders while He was on the earth.  Healing the sick, casting out demons, raising the dead, walking on water, feeding the multitudes, calming the storm, just to name a few.   We read of His teachings and his sermons and think how exciting it must have been for the disciples to be with Jesus on these occasions.  But the gospel accounts only highlight a select few incidents on certain days in the Lord’s life.  Does that mean the other days they walked with Jesus were just ordinary, hum-drum days?   I find that hard to imagine.  I can’t help but believe that every single day with Jesus the disciples witnessed something extraordinary.  I believe that is what today’s key verse means.  Jesus did more amazing things than could be contained in written records.  Surely every day they saw and heard more than just everyday things because they were in the company of the divine Son of God.

You and I don’t have the incarnate Christ physically present with us, but that doesn’t mean we have to miss out on the miraculous.  You see, we have the presence of Jesus Christ, in the person of the Holy Spirit living in us, and if we are willing, living through us.

We find recorded in John 14, Jesus’ promise to His disciples, “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you” (v. 18).  He was not talking about His appearances after His resurrection; He was talking about the Holy Spirit, whom He would send to empower His followers.  By that Spirit, Jesus said, “[you] will do what I have been doing; [you] will do even greater things than these” (v. 12).  That is how Jesus could tell His disciples: “I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:20).  He would be with them—and with us, through His indwelling Holy Spirit.

What does that mean for us?  It means that, just as was so for the disciples, we are living every day in the extraordinary presence of Jesus Christ.  That means every day for us is never just an ordinary day.  Every day you and I walk with Jesus, we are filled with the power of the divine Son of God.    He’s right there with us, because He is in us.  Does that mean that we will see the sick healed, the dead raised, multitudes fed and all the things the disciples saw with their own eyes?  Well, yes and no.  I will never count out the possibility of God doing today what He did in the first century, He is still the same God of miracles in every age.  And through His followers, healing takes place (consider the ministry of Samaritan’s Purse physician Kent Brantly and team during the Ebola crisis); and multitudes are fed (have you ever had the privilege of serving at a homeless shelter?)  I will say the likelihood of seeing the physical dead raised to life is pretty slim, but every day we have the opportunity to see dead marriages come back to life, to see dead churches restored to vibrancy, and especially to see the spiritually dead resurrected to spiritual life.

Maybe your life feels like a drudge of laundry, kids, paperwork, telephones, machines or assembly lines.  Day in and day out it’s the same routine, the same faces, and the same struggles.  Where is the extraordinary in that?  I believe we can find it if we have our eyes open to what God is doing around us.  Every sunrise is a wonder, those sweet babies are living, breathing miracles, and even our own bodies are a marvel to behold.  Nature offers us glimpses of God’s power all around us: the beauty and fragrance of the flowers, the warmth of the sun with the cooling breeze, and the glorious colors of the sunset all give witness to the awesomeness of God.  I also believe we can be part of the extraordinary by letting the Spirit of Christ work through us to accomplish incredible things beyond our own natural abilities and strengths.  Your testimony can be the springboard to the miracle of a transformed life.  Your kind words and caring actions have the power to restore hope—and if you’ve ever lost hope, you know that finding it again is nothing short of a miracle.

What wonders await our senses when we look for God’s hand in this world?  What miracle can He work through you in someone’s life today?  My friend, I encourage you to look around with fresh eyes and a seeking heart for the extraordinary presence of God around you and inside you.  If you are a follower of Christ, no day is “just another day,” because nothing is ever ordinary when Jesus is there.

How wonderful are Your ways, O Lord, how miraculous are your deeds.  Please give me eyes to see all you are doing around me in and within me.  Help me to see the extraordinary in my everyday life.  Amen.

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