Praying for a miracle…Part 2


Just following up on an earlier post.  I mentioned I would write some more about miracles and about visiting people personally as the church goes.  Here’s a quick summary about praying for miracles. 

Probably the best teaching I ever heard on this was from Bob Russell, now retired from Southeast Christian Church in Louisville, KY.  He had a progressive “Big idea”…

1.  God answers prayer.

2.  God answers prayer in miraculous ways.

3.  God answers prayer in miraculous ways, but not very often.

There is a lot that could be said about this, but let me give you my best thoughts…

First, Prayer has real power.  I say this as a theological truth and as a personal experience.  When we pray, God listens and responds.  He changes the course of circumstances, events, relational dynamics, and temptation.  Suncrest’s founding pastor, John Wasem, once said, “If you really believe in prayer, you would probably pray a whole lot more than you do.”  That’s true, isn’t it?  Prayer becomes a last resort or a token supplement to actions we take on our own to try to fix most situations.  But when the Bible says “You have not becasue you ask not” it is a motivator for asking, isn’t it?

Some people are hesitant to pray for miracles.  I think at some level it is because they are afraid God will not answer their request.  I mean, to answer a miraculous prayer God would have to act in a supernatural way, right?  I would agree wholeheartedly…but I fear the basis of that question reveals something about the other prayers of our lives — we don’t really expect God to act supernaturally (especially at our requests!). 

I would suggest that God cannot act in any way that is not supernatural.  It is is who he is.  So, every time he answers a prayer (large or small in our minds), he is acting supernaturally.

So, whether something seems small or large (in my mind, possible or impossible), I really try to make no distinction in how boldly I ask God to move.  Those are false barriers to God.  The only time I would not pray for a miracle is if it is clear to me that in His will, God has something else in mind.  (Since I’m no expert in reading God’s will in all circumstances, that means I rarely hesitate to pray for a miracle). 

Practically Speaking, that means I might pray with the qualifier “If it is your will, God…”, but I try to reflect that spirit in all of my prayers, whether I say it out loud or not.  My overarching prayer, always, is that God’s will be done in this world.

Here’s the thing about praying for miracles…I ask for them and even expect them (becuase I know God is able to do them), but I do not presume them to be answered.  I want my attitude to be the same as Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego when they were about to be thrown into a furnace that would burn them alive…

If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it, and he will rescue us from your hand, O king.  But even if he does not, we want you to know, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.”     -Daniel 3:17-18

God answers miraculous prayers for us rarely enough for us to remember they are miraculous.  If he answered them all, the event would feel very common place (and not very miraculous, wouldn’t it? 

Also, I think if you trace how God did miracles in the Bible you will always find a greater purpose — and most often that greater purpose (beyond the person being physically healed or something similar) was to open door for his good news message – lending credibility or cracking open people’s hearts with undeniable power.

I know that’s just the tip of the iceberg, but I’ll stop there for now.  If you post comments or questions, I’ll try to get to them.

~ by Greg Lee on June 24, 2007.

4 Responses to “Praying for a miracle…Part 2”

  1. Welcome to the blogging world. Looks great!

  2. ok here is my question. if i do pray for a miracle and nothing happens, that means that God intends for me to stay in my situation right? so does that mean that he is intentionally letting people screw me over? what would be the reason for that? this kind of goes back to what we were talking about before. i don’t mean to blame God here, i am merely trying to think through this logically. and these questions beg for an answer. over arching purpose or not, does God want me to suffer for years just so that I will learn something or be a little more effective for him? certainly there is a line to be crossed here, and I guess my question is, has he crossed it, or am I just coming up with a wrong conclusion to this question?

    • Read Isaiah 58:1-9… Now, sometimes yes God will let things happens maybe so that you will know that they only one you can trust is God, that they only one that will make you happy is God. That life is not easy but that He is with you. I don’t think your suffering can compare to peters, pauls etc… And the boasted about their suffering because even though they were weak they were strong. Because God delights on your weaknesses and makes them strong.

  3. […] So for what it’s worth…if it could be helpful to you and you missed it the first time, here’s the posting: […]

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