It is interesting to note that in almost every miracle story in the Gospels, the evangelists never say that everyone who witnessed the miracle believed in Jesus. Rather, we read that many came to believe in Him. The difference between “everyone” and “many” offers a significant spiritual challenge for us to reflect upon in our own age.
We must remember that every miracle performed by Jesus was a sign of the Kingdom of God that was inaugurated in His life, death and resurrection. They were acts of divine healing, or the restoration of right order or a sign of Jesus’ power over death that point to the restoration of God’s rule over all creation. They were not magic but acts of divine power that required its witnesses to acknowledge the true identity of Jesus who performed them. If there was no openness to see Jesus’ true identity, or if the person who witnessed His miracles was hard of heart, stubborn, or cynical, such a person could easily have walked away claiming that the miracle was a magic act or a hoax.
If beauty is seen in the eyes of the beholder, so too miracles can only be “seen” by those who recognize the inbreaking of God’s power in our world.
How often do we miss the power of God in our lives because of our stubbornness, anger or cynicism? How many times does a miracle occur and we automatically ascribe it to “chance” or “good luck” or some “unknown scientific reason”? How can we recognize God’s power in our own age when we are not attuned to His presence around us?
Many people walked away from Jesus’ miracles unimpressed and non-believing. Will we do the same?
The previous reflection originally appeared on Bishop Frank Caggiano’s Facebook page. Follow the Bishop for daily reflections and weekly videos!