Today I saw a leaf suspended in the air, dancing in the wind and twirling, but not falling. I stopped and watched it for a moment, amazed and a bit confused, until I looked closely and saw a tiny, nearly invisible thread of a spider’s web that attached the leaf to the branch above. Then it all made sense and I could walk on, realizing that it was an amazing feat of nature that the tiny wisp of a thread could support a leaf while the wind wildly spun it around.
Many of the things in our lives have explanations. Someone is healed of a serious disease, and the doctors credit a new medical technique or medicine. Someone survives an avalanche and walks away unscathed, because they were prepared with the right equipment. We look for explanations to try to understand. Or we look for God’s divine intervention in the form of miracles.
Well, frankly, as I realized today, I do both. I believe and appreciate all the scientific explanations of everyday phenomena. I’m especially interested in meteorology and understanding how the weather works. But I also believe in miracles.
I believe in a God who hears and answers prayer. Maybe I won’t pray for snow in South Texas, but watching the weather report, if I see a blizzard up north, I’ll pray for the protection of loved ones there. If I hear of a tornado watch in our area, I’ll pray for it to lift up and pass over us without causing severe damage or loss of life.
I think it’s a wonder of God’s creation that my jasmine blooms after a dry, harsh winter. I thought maybe the bush hadn’t survived, but then, after the first warm spring rains, with the rising temperature, I see tiny buds burst out and I’m sure it’s part of God’s miracle of creation. A horticulturist might explain about the plant species and zonal growing periods and be content with a scientific explanation. I believe we’re both right; there is an explanation, but that doesn’t hurt my sense of wonder. I enjoy hearing evidence about the world around me, and it only supports my amazement at the myriad signs of God’s fingerprints that nature presents us with every day.