Blog by Rob Cresswell.
When Jesus was asked by a distraught father if He could heal his tormented son, this was His reply:
“ ‘If you can’? said Jesus. ‘Everything is possible for one who believes.’” Mark 9:23
In other words… “What were you expecting? That this would be yet another failed attempt at healing and that things would just continue to get worse? Everything is possible for those who come expecting a miracle from me!”
That’s why we’ve just had some scroll banners printed up with the slogan ‘Expect a Miracle’ printed on them.* Because when we fill our hearts with expectation in the Lord, everything is possible.
What does it mean?
What do we mean when we say ‘expect a miracle’? Here’s a simple explanation of its Latin origins:
- Expect: ‘Ex’ – out – (as in exit) and ‘Spectate’ – look for
- Miracle: from ‘mirus’ meaning wonderful
- So: ‘Expect a miracle’ means – ‘Looking out for something wonderful…’
After the church was birthed at Pentecost and persecution broke out against the new Christian believers, Peter prayed that they would see miracles:
“Now, Lord… Stretch out your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” Acts 4:29-30
There was an expectation that the God who ‘made the heavens and the earth and the sea, and everything in them’ (verse 24) would also demonstrate His wonderful deeds through them as they spoke and acted according to the gospel of Jesus. He is the same God today as He was then and it is the same gospel – so we too can pray with confidence and expect healing, signs and wonders.
Getting engaged with expectation
‘Expect a miracle’ is not a passive or shallow state of mind, it’s a mind engaged with expressions of action (love and faith) that springs from hope or expectation (Colossians 1:5). That hope is not in human strength or positive thinking but in divine power released by Jesus through the Holy Spirit. When we expect miracles we do a deeply holy and spiritual thing because we partner with the Word and the Spirit to see the manifest power of God.
The reason we need to ENCOURAGE one another to “look out for something wonderful from Jesus” is because it’s so easy to diminish that power through scepticism and doubt. But we mustn’t allow ourselves to get discouraged and walk around simply accepting and accommodating sickness and torment. When Paul was writing to a young pastor named Timothy he tried to encourage him to keep ‘Expecting miracles’ – and it’s an encouragement many of us need to hear today. He said, “stir yourself up in the powerful spiritual tools God has given you” because “the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7
The word ‘power’ here is from the Greek word dynamis and it’s the explosive power of the Holy Spirit that manifests in our lives through our submission and honouring of Him. This is an empowering relationship that can overflow to others through our love and faith action.
Faith and Love that spring from Hope
At one of our Supernatural Christian Workshops recently we set some faith activation challenges for the attendees to complete over dinner break. The challenge was to simply try (or, ‘Just give it a go!’ as Aliss would say). One of the attendees, a lady called Chi Chi who’d come all the way from Nigeria, went into town and decided she was going to pray for someone to be healed. She prayed for a man who was blind in one eye and to his amazement the sight returned to his damaged eye. It was indeed a wonderful miracle.
But what is even more delightful about this miracle is the reaction of Chi Chi as she videoed the event on her phone. She shouts out with joy: “Wow! Wow! Wow! Hallelujah! That is Jesus! That is Jesus! Wow! That is Jesus! You can see? Wow! Wow! Wow!… she seemed more delighted and amazed than the man!
The power in expecting a miracle is not released by the expectation… it’s in the declaration and the action that come from that hope. Expectation incubates the miracle and courage releases it. Courage is not about confidence, it’s about feeling your own inadequacies and doing it anyway. That’s the kind of person God likes to use: “For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:10
EXPECT A MIRACLE – So here at Spirit Lifestyle we have made this one of our banners.* Where does this expectation come from? From the One who is sufficient to perform it. And how will this miracle arrive? Through the words and actions of those that expect them.
*Expect a Miracle banner available with Party Kits and at workshops.