There are a variety of ways that miracles happen in the Bible. In many cases circumstances seem to demand it like when Jesus and the disciples encountered a storm on the Sea of Galilee (Mark 4:35-41). Very often people went to Jesus looking for healing (Mark 9:14-30) but sometimes they were healed just to glorify the Kingdom of God (see John 9:1-12). We know that all miracles are designed to point to God and the Kingdom of heaven but the trigger point seems to be something quite random on the surface.
Today we read of the healing of a disabled beggar by Peter. The man had asked Peter and John for money, which was his reason for sitting outside the temple gate, but they didn’t have any. In that situation most of us would probably apologise for not being able to help and move on as rapidly as possible. Perhaps Peter saw an opportunity or felt the nudge of the Holy Spirit but he gave the man something else entirely – He exercised his faith in Jesus with power and great authority. “Look at us! ...Silver and gold we do not have, but what I have I give to you. In the name of Jesus of Nazareth walk.” He might well have found some resistance since the beggar was about to lose his livelihood but instead the man was healed and a much bigger opportunity was created to share the Gospel with a group of onlookers.
Reading that account I wonder how often we miss opportunities like that. How often does God say “I want you to heal this person or give this word of knowledge to someone to glorify my name and we’re too absorbed with our own stuff that we don’t hear it or even worse we choose to ignore it? There’s a wonderful story about the evangelist Smith Wigglesworth who was sitting on a train when he sensed God asking him to share the gospel with the man sitting next to him. Wigglesworth was prepared to obedient but said ‘Yes Lord I’ll speak to him but give me the whole carriage.’ So God honoured the request and by the time they’d reached the next station the whole carriage had given their lives to Christ.
Jesus, Peter, John and Smith Wiglesworth had all been filled with the Holy Spirit in the most extraordinary way we should seek that infilling for ourselves.
Heavenly Father, I seek to honour and glorify you in all that I do. Please fill me with everything you have for me now and raise me up to be like Jesus. Amen.