“You are the God who performs miracles, you display your power among the peoples” (Psalm 77:14, NIV).
Growing up with a healthy dose of popular theology from television, my concept of miracles was that they just erratically showed up from place to place for the lucky or if individuals could just beg long enough and hard enough, God just might feel sorry for them and come through for them big time in the clutch. True to that interpretation, many today think that miracles just seem to happen for no apparent reason or that they are for the few, special people who are mysteriously awarded some of God’s power and favor in their lives.
But the Word of God reveals a totally different concept and theology of miracles. Our great God who works miracles (Psalm 86:10) is actually internally motivated and predisposed to show up and perform miracles because miracles are manifestations of His goodness and mercy. Miracles, the divine breaking into the earth by God to display His will, Word, covenant, and love on behalf of His people (including the suspension of natural laws and overt authority over all the earth’s forces), are actually the result of a powerful mixture of elements that when present provide an atmosphere conducive for the releasing of supernatural power. Although this should never be misconstrued to imply that there is some formula for obtaining a miracle, these elements do provide an atmosphere or surrounding or pervading mood, environment, influence, spirit, or climate where miracles are much more likely.
The atmosphere that is the breeding ground for miracles is the atmosphere of faith. I can almost hear Smith Wigglesworth, as he was reported to have said in a church meeting, “Stop charging the air with unbelief.” Smith was terribly grieved to hear the avalanche of doubt, fear, and unbelief coming from the preacher’s lips during a sermon. He then took over the meeting, preached faith, charged the air with faith, and seeded a powerful atmosphere spawning a great move of God in that service. The Scripture clearly teaches this principle stating that, “And he (Jesus) did not do many miracles there because of their lack of faith” (Matthew 13:58, NIV). This is a powerful principle that we must come to terms with if we want to see God’s miraculous power flowing in our day.
It is telling that Jesus did not say that there was no power available for miracles that day. He did not say that doing miracles that day was not his will. He did not lack love or compassion for those that may have needed to receive a miracle that day. He did not confirm the ivory tower theologian who insists that miracles have passed away. No, Jesus made it plain that the reason for the drought of miracles was (and is today) the lack of faith among the people. To put it plainly, there is no “day” of miracles, but a God of miracles and He is very much alive and active in the earth today wherever He finds a prevailing atmosphere of faith within which to manifest His power, glory, and goodness.
One of my absolute favorite passages of Scripture (I know I say that a lot) is Mark 2:1-12 and the story of the house meeting where the four friends carried a paralyzed friend to Jesus for healing and restoration. There are so many powerful truths that can be drawn from this text, but I want to focus on the elements in this story that helped to produce this amazing atmosphere for miracles. I encourage you to meditate on the concepts and endeavor to put them into practice in your life, your family, your work place, and your church.
1. Miracles break out where Jesus is tangibly present (so let’s praise and worship Him until he shows up).
2. Miracles break out where the Word is honored (so let’s take the Word at face value and believe it).
3. Miracles break out where salvation is emphasized (so let’s trumpet the message of forgiveness and grace).
4. Miracles break out where there is strong opposition (so let’s bind the voice that would hinder miracles).
5. Miracles break out where the Spirit has liberty (so let’s be extra sensitive to the urgings of the Holy Spirit).
6. Miracles break out where faith is demonstrated (so let’s activate our faith with corresponding actions).
7. Miracles break out where expectancy is high (so let’s expect God to show up and show out).