Why do we have such a hard time letting ourselves believe in miracles? Why do we scoff when we hear an account of the seemingly impossible? Why do we stop believing those that we usually trust as truthful when they suggest that they have witnessed a miracle? Why can’t we believe them then?
In a world that has largely stopped believing in miracles, we are in great need of one. We are in need of a change of heart, because our hearts have become hardened after years of distrust and unbelief. Do you remember the days when you believed everything that you were told? When you innocently took everyone at their word? When you believed that miracles were possible? That the blind might come to see again, and the deaf might be able to hear? That the dead could be raised, and God could become man? Some of you might have retained some of those beliefs, but nearly every one of us has surely had our faith shaken at one time or another. Nearly every one of us has asked at least once: is this really possible?
Our world wants to tell us ‘no.’ Our world wants to tell us that miracles are impossible, that the world is full of storytellers who are either delirious or manipulative. Our world wants us to believe that the blind will never see, the deaf will never hear, and the dead will never rise again. Our world wants us to stop believing.
But the world is not alone in this effort. It has been joined by the most unlikely partner. The world is not the only entity slowly destroying our faith. Whether it realizes it or not, Christianity is helping to destroy itself. It has annihilated its own core.
There are those men and women who call themselves Christians, but who have also stripped this title of all its meaning. Christian- a follower of Christ. Christ- the Messiah, the Son of God, God made man. Jesus Christ, the son of a virgin, worker of miracles, conqueror of death through His own death and resurrection. His entire being is wrapped up in miracles, in impossibilities becoming not only possible, but real. With His coming into the world, the blind were made to see, the deaf to hear, the lame to walk again. The dead were raised, and Christ Himself died and rose again. His entire life is a series of miracles.
Miracles are central to the life of Christ. They are the signs by which He showed forth His divinity and announced to the world that the Messiah had come, that God had become man. By His miracles, man came to believe. And by the greatest miracle, His own resurrection, man came to be saved. Without miracles, Christ would not have been the Promised One. And man would not have been saved.
But there are Christians who would have us believe that we are mistaken, that we have been deceived. Christ is not God. He is not a miracle worker. He is just a man, a teacher. The stories that describe His miracles are just that- stories. Myths. Fairy tales. Anything but the truth.
These men and women would have us believe that miracles are impossible, that the Gospels are embellished accounts of a man, sent by God, to teach people how to live a good life. That’s it. That’s all there is to Him. Christ is nothing more than a man of morals. He is not a man of miracles.
But without miracles, what do we have left? The core of Christianity is destroyed; it is stripped to its essence, only to find that there is nothing there. Christianity rises and falls with the miracles of Christ. It rises and falls with His identity. If Christ could not work miracles, if He could not rise from the dead, He is not the Savior that we need. Without these miracles, there can be no salvation. And if we do not believe in them, we cannot be saved.
There are Christians who have bought into the same lie as the modern world. We are told that we must be skeptical, that we must approach every story with doubt. We are told that we must not believe in the impossible, and the impossible comprises anything that cannot be proven scientifically. And the Bible doesn’t count as a legitimate source.
Can’t prove that Christ was born of a virgin? Don’t believe it. Can’t prove that Jesus could restore the ability to see, hear, or walk? Disregard the stories- they’re just myths. Can’t prove that He rose from the dead? Well, I hate to break it to you, but He didn’t.
But without these miracles, what do we have left? Nothing that can redeem us. Nothing that can save us from sin and death. Nothing that matters.
We need to learn from the children. Christ told His disciples that they must become like little children (Matthew 18:3). We must have faith like these little ones. They are willing to believe everything that they are told. Sure, that might be a very delicate position to be in. Naïve as they are, there are some people who would like to take advantage of them, but that does not mean that they are worse off than those who cannot believe anything at all. It is better to have faith than to doubt. It is better to believe than to question everything. It is better to believe in miracles than to believe in nothing. And so, as we begin to prepare for the birth of our Lord, as we approach this wonderful season of faith and joy, we must look to our children for the most important lesson: we must learn to believe.
Mary Help of Christians, pray for us!