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FIRST-PERSON: The miracle of love & grace

EL CAJON, Calif. (BP)–Does God still perform miracles? Ask missionary Bertha Smith. During her early days in China, she settled in the only place she could find in the village of Tsining — an ox stall in a villager’s barn.

The flies nearly drove her crazy — house flies, horse flies, black, green … “Lord,” she prayed, “I just can’t eat with those flies all over my food. Please take them away or enable me not to mind them.” From that moment, not a fly flew into the ox stall.

But that wasn’t the greatest miracle. The villagers turned from idols to God because of her ministry. “If those people were born of the Spirit,” she wrote in “Go Home and Tell,” “that was the greatest miracle…. Flies have no enmity against God; but when a human being realizes he is deserving of hell … and willingly turns away from sin and chooses Christ …, that is a miracle!”

Has God ever given you a miracle? Or do you wonder why not? Perhaps you’re overlooking the greatest of His miracles — His love and grace. Romans 5:8 says, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

When we come to God through the shed blood of Jesus, we’re raised (resurrected) from death to life — a miracle for us! “And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1).

Soon the Lord Jesus is coming in the clouds. And according to 1 Thessalonians 4:16, “the dead in Christ will rise first.” The dust of dead and buried saints is reconstituted into glorified bodies — a miracle.

But the spiritual resurrection of our souls from death to life at the moment of conversion is equally miraculous. “But God … because … He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ” (Ephesians 2:4-5).

We were utterly dead within (without God), separated from eternal life, wrapped in guilt and sin, helpless and hell-bound. But Jesus quickened us, crying, “Awake, you who sleep, arise from the dead!” (Ephesians 5:14). He made us alive who were dead in sin — a true miracle.

We can’t change the past — hence we have guilt. But when Christ comes into our lives, we have a new beginning: “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17). “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow” (Isaiah 1:18). “I have swept away your sins like the morning mists” (Isaiah 44:22 NLT).

At conversion, your past was revisited, your record wiped clean, your mistakes forgotten, your sin forgiven, your guilt removed and your soul set free — a miracle.

In coming to Christ, we also find the power to begin living a new kind of life. God works in us both to will and to do His good pleasure (Philippians 2:13).

A Vietnam Vet living on the streets, on crutches, was panhandling for money. After hearing Philippians 1:6, he gave his life to Christ. “The Lord moved in and … put all my depression and hatred into a bottle and threw it away.” Frank is now a mission director. Christ has changed millions of lives — a miracle.

In Christ we’re given a new hope with the promises of God. Christians awake saying, “This is the day the LORD has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24). We close our eyes saying, “You alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety” (Psalm 4:8).

Day by day, the Lord meets our needs, answers our prayers and increases our optimism. We have an inner bedrock of hope that enables us to rejoice in the Lord. How do such peace, love and joy come into our hearts? — a miracle.

If you think you’ve never seen a miracle, think again. You haven’t been passed over. The Christian life is supernatural, and all God’s children have experienced miracles. All His children are miracles. You are a miracle too!
David Jeremiah is the founder of Turning Point for God, senior pastor of Shadow Mountain Community Church in El Cajon, Calif., and chancellor of Christian Heritage College. For more information on Turning Point, go to www.TurningPointOnline.org.

    About the Author

  • David Jeremiah

    David Jeremiah is the founder and host of Turning Point for God and senior pastor of Shadow Mountain Community Church in El Cajon, Calif. For more information on Turning Point, go to www.DavidJeremiah.org.

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