Why do we often forget God’s closeness to us? Why do we often forget that all things work together for good for those who love God and are called according to his purpose? (cf. Romans 8:28)
For several years, I was a marketing and communications student. I learned that the average American is exposed to hundreds (some researchers say thousands) of messages in a single day, but we hardly recognize—let alone remember—most of them. Amidst the multitude of messages, our brains’ method of processing and retaining the “loudest” or most extreme messages have an unfortunate result: We hardly recognize—let alone remember—God’s quiet miracles in our lives.
Amidst the multitude of miracles, we tend to remember only the “most extreme miracles” of the Gospel—
- Jesus calms the storm
- He raises Lazarus from the dead
- He heals the paralytic, lowered from the roof of an overcrowded house
—but most of Jesus’ actions in people’s lives were quiet and ordinary. Jesus’ first miracle was the unassuming transformation of water into wine. As he ministered to people, Jesus looked into their eyes. He smiled at them. He loved them. He spoke with them. Many times, he took them aside by themselves. These are the quiet, ordinary ways Jesus revealed himself to people’s hearts.
Last week, Pope Francis reminded us that Jesus continues to act in this way: “Let us remember what (Jesus) did at the wedding of Cana! Yes, the Lord, if we place ourselves in his hands, will work miracles for us—but they are miracles of everyday life!”
What is a ‘miracle of everyday life’?
For each of us, they look different. As a wife, I truly believe that most of God’s miracles in my life come through my husband’s love: when he forgives me without hesitation, when he transforms my sadness into laughter, or when he puts aside his own self for my sake. Miracles in my everyday life take place in the kitchen, during a car ride, or on the couch. But I rarely stop and recognize them as miracles; God manifesting himself in my life.
So, how can we become better at recognizing everyday miracles?
Jesus said, “I give praise to you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for although you have hidden these things from the wise and the learned you have revealed them to the childlike.” (Matthew 11:25)
Becoming childlike (not to be confused with immaturity, or childishness) means answering Jesus’ simple invitation from Matthew 11:28-30: “Come to me…”
- “Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest.” Like a child, we must eagerly and often run into God’s arms. And he will love us.
- “Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart…” As we begin to trust God, we open our hearts to be guided and transformed by his love.
- “..and you will find rest for your selves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.” When we are confident that God loves us, we delight in his signs of affection for us. Our eyes are opened, and we see the miracles all around us.
Each year, “Come to Me” serves as the theme for the Pilgrim Center of Hope’s Catholic Women’s Conference. Some people wonder why we’ve kept the same theme year after year. The answer is simple: God never stops inviting us, and we never stop needing the reminder.
Today, let’s answer his invitation. What miracles will you see today?