I’ve seen miracles this weekend, miracles of the Christmas variety.
A little girl with a blob of white hair pleased with a toy bear that came in a plastic bag, in a paper bag that included a burger and promised happiness. This little girl has no place to call home. She has a bag of clothes and shoes, but no closet to put them in. But this weekend she had fun, real fun.
A little boy with the whites of his eyes made large by the wonder and magic of a train, hot chocolate, and strings of lights. The darkness of his skin making the whites of his eyes more expressive. His missing teeth growing back in and his borrowed gloves hanging off his new coat making his little face seem like the cutest face that’s ever existed. This little boy has seen disappointment. Maybe that is why his excitement is so contagious that even Santa paused to ask his name as he hands out his bells to children.
I’ve seen miracles this weekend, Christmas miracles.
A little girl that doesn’t see. Her eyes don’t let her see the majesty of a mountain topped with evergreens and snow. Her lack of sight doesn’t stop her from walking forward into any new room to find something new to discover. The stairs from one floor of a lodge to another are a mystery she wants to discuss. She feels the coldness of snow and the feeling of brand new Christmas jammies, the cold air, and the round, kid-sized pizza.
A little boy who’s parents are immigrants has an inherited accent, an accent that comes from learning to speak in a home where his parents speak the language of their childhood. They are from a country that carries stigma, stigma that was created by a virus and sensationalized news. He reluctantly tells us its name. I see him included in a table, made apart of a family, treated to a bubbly soft-drink and conversation. Inclusion is a gift.
I’ve seen miracles this weekend.
A Muslim tour-bus driver, in awe of a church’s love for children. Ministered to by caring, friendly people. Patient, hard working people who pour out their energy for the lowly and the least. Surely he will reconsider his beliefs after seeing the love of Jesus so clearly at work, in hearts and with hands in front of his eyes.
These type of miracles don’t come cheap. They are hard earned. They require personal sacrifice.
They include interrupted sleep, dishpan hands, acres of carpet to vacuum, endless lost socks, coats, and shoes found, lost, and found again, nursing little coughs, comforting night terrors, coloring books and crayons underfoot, picked up, thrown down, and picked up again, meals prepared, snacks served, tables wiped, shoes tied, miles driven, frozen sing-alongs endured, broken sleds reimbursed, potty breaks, hand washing, and huge risks.
Church, you’re missing your opportunity. You’re missing out on miracles. They are slipping through your clean, rested hands, and it is your loss.
Music is the best. Here's a song for you.