The greater miracle

{repost from 9/2021}

Jesus, seeing their faith, said to the sick man of the palsy: be of good heart, son, thy sins are forgiven thee. And behold some of the scribes said within themselves: He blasphemeth. And Jesus seeing their thoughts, said: Why do you think evil in your hearts? Whether is easier, to say, Thy sins are forgiven thee: or to say, Arise, and walk? (Excerpt from Gospel, 18th Sunday after Pentecost, Matt 9:1-8)

Two years ago today was the last day I saw Michael as I knew him…he was wheeled off into surgery and the story takes heartbreaking and miraculous turns from there.

When he survived his first round of lethal brain swelling, on the feast of Michaelmas no less, it was indeed a miracle. And we praised the Lord. But as the days of brain damage and failed treatments wore on, we begged for another miracle: for his healing. Thousands of us, to the end, implored God for this grace.

And yet he died.

And yet the greater miracle *did* occur.

You see, Almighty God could have healed him physically with but a thought. But the healing we both needed was something God has chosen not to do on his own: the healing of our souls.

Repentance, cooperation with His graces, seeking Him in darkness and desolation are all precursors to God not only bestowing His mercy but transforming our inner selves into the saints we were created to be. Michael could’ve been healed and we could’ve very well gone on to live the same lives as before. But the cross is where we have truly found ourselves: Michael in his created home, myself walking the narrow way for much longer, in the crucibles of trial and fire.

And these miracles are continuing to happen each day. The kids and I transformed by the struggle. The struggle is where the gold is. The struggle is where we find healing.

I see all the miraculous ends I’m hoping for and I humbly implore for those, just like I did his healing. But I have also found contentment in the greater miracles of today: the continued refinement of our souls into the saints we long to be, and the great peace and joy that comes with it.

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