I’ve had lots of extra time on my hands lately, plenty of people have. During this free time, I often daydream and think. There have been two things specifically that I’ve thought a lot about.
The first thing I’ve been thinking a lot about is the idea of miracles. Last week I published a video about Eucharistic Miracles. (https://youtu.be/QuSd79xkIGM) Then my friend asked me to paint Jesus’ miracles when he passed through angry crowds. (John 8:59 and Luke 4:30) Maybe these aren’t your typical big flashy miracles, but there were angry crowds who wanted to kill him. One wanted to stone him and the other almost threw him off a cliff.
How do you get out of that? He walked RIGHT THROUGH THEM... WITHOUT BEING SEEN! My friend and I think that should be considered a miracle.
Then the end of last Sunday’s gospel stated “Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples that are not written in this book.” (John 20:30) Just think of what other kinds of miracles Jesus performed. Think of the miracles big and small that happened while He was here on this earth.
Then the second thing that I’ve thought a lot about is a press conference Governor Andrew Cuomo had recently.
In this press conference on the COVID-19 response he stated, “The number is down because we brought the number down. God did not do that… A lot of pain and suffering did that. That’s how it works.”
I stand by all of the social distancing guidelines. I believe that it is the best way that we can help fight this disease that is killing many of our brothers and sisters in Christ. I wrote a whole blog about it a few weeks ago. (www.catechistscientist.com/blog/love-triangle) But I think it is brazen and terrible to say that God did not have a hand in any of it.
On the flip side, I do not think God said “Abracadabra” and the numbers went down either. This train of thought is also dangerous. One of my biggest reasons for starting the Catechist Scientist was to show how when science studies the natural world, it is studying the creation of God. God is a part of everything we do.
One of the saddest stories I’ve heard since starting this was of a woman whose father refused to get cancer treatment because he believed that God alone would save him.
God RARELY performs miracles like that.
The rest of the time He works through individuals like you and me. God offered help to this man, afflicted by cancer, by giving him doctors and scientists and granting them the intellect to come up with those cures and administer them. Science and medicine are amazing tools that God gives us. It is through those tools and through people like you and me that God performs these everyday miracles. These unseen blessings are each miracles in themselves.
God gave the miracle of life to the many scientists and doctors who are fighting this pandemic. He blessed them with intellect and empathy so that they can continue combatting this problem. God helped instill in those of us who are isolating the virtues of love, so that we would choose to stay home, and fortitude, so that we would have the strength to continue doing it for an extended time.
The error that Governor Cuomo made is one that we do each and every day. We take God out of the equation. We deny his glory in the little daily miracles. We forget to appreciate what true gifts these blessings really are.
This is something I have struggled with during social isolation. Every single day, I have forced myself to take the time to list out my blessings.
- I’m blessed with a loving husband and family, a roof over my head, food in my kitchen.
- I’m blessed with a beautiful view from my apartment’s balcony and a laptop which helps me connect to the rest of the world that I can’t currently physically view.
- I’m blessed with good health and an ability to exercise and keep that good health.
- I’m blessed with the freedom to paint or read; blessed with subscriptions to Netflix, Disney+, and Amazon Prime so I can binge watch shows when I’m too tired to do those other things.
None of that would be possible without God the creator. Life is currently extremely chaotic and a lot of terrible things are happening, but I encourage you to look for the good. Look for the blessings. Then when you do, say a prayer of thanksgiving, for life itself would not exist without God. Nothing would be possible without him who made us.