Wednesday, January 15, 2014

when miracles don't happen

Continuing my thoughts on faith, there is a great article in the last issue of TIME magazine, available here: article
Andy Crouch talks about the family of 13-year-old Jahi McMath, who has her on life support after she was declared brain dead from a tonsillectomy. I can’t imagine something so horrific happening, and my heart aches for this family. He talks about how Christians have faith that God can heal, but they are more likely to rely on extraordinary medical intervention to accomplish these miracles.
            Of course, God can heal and raise from the dead with or without medical intervention. But don’t we all hurt for this family? Wouldn’t we do the same thing? If my little girl was injured I would expect every doctor on the planet to do everything possible to save her.
            Crouch affirms that he does believe in miracles and says “miracles are not the result of human or technological heroics. They come, if they come at all, when we are at the end of our heroics. And miracles are not magic. They do not come because we somehow persuade God to act by our strong faith. Sometimes, even for the most faithful, they do not come at all” (Crouch, 2014, p.17)
            This silence of unanswered prayers can be unbearable. If you are reading this in hopes of an answer, I am sorry to disappoint. I do find comfort in knowing that just because a prayer is unanswered, it does not mean it was because I did not have faith.  Someday we will know why each prayer was not answered to our liking. Sometimes we get to hold these gems on Earth. Crouch does not leave us in this dark of miracles that don’t happen. He closes: “The real hope for us all is not that there is a machine that will save us but that even at the very end there will be someone who loves us, closer than our own breath. From what I’ve seen of those closest to Jahi McMath, that hope and faith is with her, stronger than any shadow” (Crouch, 2014, 17)
Crouch, A. (2014, January 14). Lost in the Valley of Death. TIME Magazine. 183 (2), 17.

Beth Kropf