The past few days have been pretty interesting. We have experienced much and have been so very blessed with much too. Today alone has been an interesting day. I came home sick again from work today thinking and feeling the absolute worst and then as the day progressed I watched several miracles come to pass in our family. It is very interesting to me just how blessed you can feel during difficult times. Many years ago I came across this in an old Priesthood manual. This lesson has made an impact on my life and I find words from this lesson come to mind at some interesting times and I thought I would share this....
This is from a Priesthood Study Guide Lesson published by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the 90's, I believe. This lesson talked about miracles....the title of this lesson was, "What Is the Place of Miracles in Your Life?" Let me share a bit of that lesson....
The purpose of the lesson is: Comprehend the purpose of miracles so that you can more fully appreciate the blessings of the Lord's power in your life.
When individuals lack faith in God, they tend to ridicule belief in supernatural things. They seek for proof that can be observed by the physical senses. Miracles transcend what the physical senses can perceive.
Elder Bruce R McConkie wrote: In the gospel sense, miracles are those occurrences wrought by the power of God which are wholly beyond the power of man to perform. (Mormon Doctrine, p.506)
Why is it that one man can comprehend the things of God, and another cannot? Usually, it is because one has faith in the Lord and the other has faith in man.
Before answering this question, we need to understand the nature of Jesus' miracles. Among the many miracles of the Savior were those involving the soul, including both the healing of the body and the healing of the Spirit.
Of course, the greatest miracles deal with healing the soul. Of this, President Harold B. Lee said: "The great call has come now in the sermons of the brethren to aid those who are in need of aid, not just temporal aid, but spiritual aid. The greatest miracles I see today are not necessarily the healing of sick bodies, but the greatest miracles I see are the healing of sick souls, those who are sick in soul and spirit and are downhearted and distraught, on the verge of nervous breakdowns. We are reaching out to all such, because they are precious in the sight of the Lord, and we want no one to feel that they are forgotten. I read again and again the experience of Peter and John, as they went through the gate beautiful on the way to the temple. Here was one who had never walked, impotent from his birth, begging alms of all who approached the gate. And as Peter and John approached, he held out his hand expectantly, asking for alms. Peter, speaking for this pair of missionaries--church authorities--said, "look on us." And, of course, that heightened his expectation. Then Peter said, "Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk." (Acts 3:4-6)
Now in my mind's eye I can picture this man, what was in his mind, "Doesn't this man know that I have never walked? He commands me to walk." But the biblical record doesn't end there. Peter just didn't content himself by commanding the man to walk, but he "took him by the right hand, and lifted him up." (Acts 3:7)
"Will you see the picture now of that noble soul, that chiefest of the apostles, perhaps with his arms around the shoulders of this man, and saying, "Now, my good man, have courage. I will take a few steps with you. Let's walk together, and I assure you that you can walk, because you have received a blessing by the power and authority that God has given us as men, his servants." Then the man leaped with joy" (Conference Report Apr. 1973 p. 178)
Beyond the immediate benefits that Jesus' power had on individuals or elements, what other vital purpose did his miracles serve?
Miracles are one of the great evidences of the Lord's divinity. They serve to testify of his godhood among men.
Elder James E. Talmage said:
"In the contemplation of the miracles wrought by Christ, we must of necessity recognize the operation of a power transcending our present human understanding... To comprehend the works of Christ, one must know Him as the Son of God; to the man who has not yet learned to know, to the honest soul who would inquire after the Lord, the invitation is ready; let him "Come and see" (Jesus the Christ, p. 149)
Why it is sometimes asked, do we not enjoy the same miracles in our day as in Christ's time? Why do men deny miracles? Why would God cease to do miracles in any age? How are miracles wrought?
President Spencer W Kimball said:
"In faith we plant the seed, and soon we see the miracle of the blossoming. Men have often misunderstood and have reversed the process. They would have the harvest before the planting, the reward before the service, the miracle before the faith. Even the most demanding labor unions would hardly ask the wages before the labor. But many of us would have the vigor without the observance of the health laws, prosperity through the opened windows of heaven without the payment of tithes. We would have the close communion with our Father without fasting and praying; we would have rain in due season and peace in the land without observing the Sabbath and keeping the other commandments of the Lord. We would pluck the rose before planting the roots; we would harvest the grain before sowing and cultivating...Faith is needed as much as ever before. Little can we see. We know not what the morrow will bring...
"It takes faith--unseeing faith---for young people to proceed immediately with their family responsibilities in the face of financial uncertainties. It takes faith for the young woman to bear her family instead of accepting employment, especially when schooling for the young husband is to be finished. It takes faith to observe the Sabbath when time and a half can be had working, when profit can be made, when merchandise can be sold. It takes a great faith to fast and have family prayers and to observe the Word of Wisdom. It takes faith to do home teaching, stake missionary work, and other service, when sacrifice is required. It takes faith to fill full-time missions. But know this--that all these are of the planting, while faithful, devout families, spiritual security, peace, and eternal life are the harvest." (Faith Precedes the Miracle, pp.4, 10-11) D&C 38:8-11. Certain miracles are promised to those who believe in Jesus Christ, and other promises are made to those who are faithless.
I love this lesson. It reminds me that miracles happen around me every single day in my very own home, at work, at church and in many other places. It also reminded me of the things I need to change, the things I need to correct and the things I need to do more of if I want to witness more miracles in my own life. I want this!!! Now is the time to act, now is the time to correct those things that need correcting. Now is the time to repent and ask for forgiveness for the things that need repenting of. Now is the time to gather my little family around and start doing those things we have let go recently in our life. In recent times, I had given up, I had decided that maybe it all was just not worth all the effort....that no matter how hard I could or would try things would never change. Things would never change. But as I knew then, and as I know now...this is not true and I was reminded that I cannot sit back and do nothing. The Lord expects me to do something in ways that only I can do, in ways that will help me become who He knows I can be. (If only I could see myself with those spiritual eyes that my Heavenly Father has.) I cannot wait, no matter how hard, no matter how difficult....now is the time. This life is too short and things can change in an instant. These past few days have awakened me to that knowledge far more than anything else and I know that these experiences are placed in our way to teach us something. To help us understand certain things and bring about change in our lives and that is a miracle in itself.