Finding God's Winning Spirit

Graduation Miracle

June 2, 2015 | Greg Smith | Devotional


One of the differences between miracles and magic is that magic is basically slight-of- hand stuff.  You know, the magician gets you looking left while he is doing something right or there is a cloud of smoke and he slips something in behind his back.  Magic is a manipulation/ misdirection kind of thing.  A miracle, on the other hand, is something that cannot be explained like a tumor disappearing on an x-ray or an overnight remission of cancer.  Some may say that for the Cubs to win the World Series would be a miracle, but that is probably, neither.

Webster defines miracle as:  An extraordinary event manifesting the supernatural work of God.  The fact of the matter is that there are probably more examples of miracles in our lives than magic. As this is the time of the year for graduations, high school and college, one miracle that comes to mind is our kids. How did they grow up so fast, smart, well-adjusted - normal?   How did they negotiate the perils of growing up in the midst of so many distractions and dangers? It sure was not magic because I as the magician did not really control anything. Truth be told, the only manipulation that took place was my kids manipulating me! No, their safety and awesomeness belongs to God and his ability to perform miracles. 

It is easy to go through life and take miracles for granted. We many times become desensitized to the grace and providence of God. It often takes something pretty extraordinary to get our attention, to stop and say, “Wow look what God just did!” A high school or college graduation does not always bring such acclaim – It should. (I do remember my parents saying it was a miracle I ever got out of college but I do not think that was as religious reference)

Life provides us with what I call “watermarks”. Watermarks are signposts that help us see that time is passing; events if you will, that give us the opportunity to mark time and growth. As Christians these watermarks allow us to pause and appreciate God’s guiding hand in our lives. Graduations are watermarks.

Congratulations to all Graduates and parents alike.  I hope both take time to see what, with God’s help, has been accomplished. May students take God with them – may parents rely on God for what comes next, the hardest part yet, letting go.    

This must be the answer since for the last two decades I have been pretty much clueless.     So what why bring this up you ask?  Well, for me it brings two things to consciousness.  First, it helps me to realize that when it comes right down to it, “I’m not all that”.  Secondly, it helps me to know that if and when I happen to “fall asleep at the switch,” God is still watching.  I just wish I knew this 20 years ago.   

One example of the difference between magic and miracles is seen as we look at our kids.  How did they grow up to be so smart, well-adjusted and normal?  It could not be magic because there is no way I tricked them into learning about life or values (I know this is true because you cannot trick someone if they never listening to you).  Could I have manipulated them into acting like real adults?  No way.  Even I know that for the last 20 years the only one being manipulated has been me.    


(Excerpt from Fatherhood: Fake It Till You Make It)

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