Thursday, August 30, 2018

I'm a Miracle Worker, Not a Bloody Engineer!

One thing I enjoy that runs through a number of science fiction shows is the "miracle worker" scientist/engineer trope. These miracle workers had solved so many problems with minutes to spare so often that people began to expect the miraculous of them. Despite Star Trek's Scotty proclaiming, 'I'm an engineer, not a bloody miracle worker!" everyone thought he was. Despite Stargate Atlantis's Rodney McKay always whining about how unrealistic it was to assume that he would come up with some scientific mumbo-jumbo to save the day, he always did. True, these science geeks were the writers' way of creating a solution to an impossible problem they had written themselves into. But the characters always expected the miracle workers to come through, and so did the audience. We always knew when there was a difficult situation that seemed impossible to surmount, these miracle workers would find a way to overcome it.

What would our lives be like if we had that same mindset with regard to God? What if, when impossible difficulties confronted us, we immediately assumed the attitude, "My miracle working God will save the day"? This attitude pervades scripture. When the Israelite spies returned from the Promised Land, knowing how powerful its current occupants were, Joshua and Caleb responded, "Do not be afraid of the people of the land, because we will swallow them up. Their protection is gone, but the LORD is with us. Do not be afraid of them" (Number 14:9, NIV). When Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego stood before a tyrant who was about to cast them into a fiery furnace for failing to worship the his idol, they said, "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, NIV). When the wedding in Cana ran out of wine, Mary conscripted her son, Jesus, telling the servants, "Do whatever he tells you" (John 2:5, NIV) before Jesus had even agreed to deal with the problem. When the woman Lydda died and her friends heard that Peter was in a nearby town, they immediately urged him, "Please come at once!" (Acts 9:38, NIV), knowing that Peter could do something about her death.

All throughout scripture people expected the impossible of God and they were rewarded for their faith. The same God who answered prayers and performed the miraculous then answers prayers and performs the miraculous now. But we often miss out on those miracles because we don't expect them and don't ask for them. Is God always going to perform a miracle? No, he made that clear to Paul when he refused to take away the thorn in the flesh that tormented him (2 Corinthians 12:7-9). But often God simply will not intervene miraculously without us asking for it.

We have a God who designed and controls the laws of the universe. Isn't about time that we respond to the impossible by remembering our own Miracle Worker?

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