A miracle is defined as an “an effect or extraordinary event in the physical world that surpasses all known human or natural powers and is ascribed to a supernatural cause.” I've experienced a couple of them in my life – things that could be explained no other way than to say it was by the hand of God. And I experienced a couple, as well, as a result of my elbow situation.
The first was the complete absence of pain. I waited seven hours after I broke my elbow to go to the emergency room, due to dangerous driving conditions in an increasing snowstorm and the lateness of the hour. Not a life-threatening situation by any means, I knew it could wait till the break of day. And while those initial hours weren't comfortable, as long as I didn't move my elbow, I wasn't in pain, either, making the wait bearable. Once surgery was scheduled for later that afternoon, I turned down the offer of pain medication in the interim because I simply wasn't experiencing any. Initially told I might be sent home after the surgery, my doctor dismissed that idea immediately when he came in for a pre-surgery chat, afraid that I would wake in the night in terrible pain and be on my own to deal with it. He highly favored an overnight stay. I agreed to the plan, but was ever so thankful that the situation he described never developed. Even after the insertion of a plate and screws to hold the broken pieces of the bone in place, I was never in need of a single pain pill. It was beyond amazing, and I was thankful beyond words! The recovery process was made so much easier and the time off from work so much more enjoyable because I was pain-free. People joked with me about incredibly high pain tolerance or maybe the complete lack of pain receptors in my brain; I gladly gave the credit to God.
When a second surgery became necessary to straighten my arm, the doctor presented three scenarios of actions he would take, depending on what he found when he got inside. Suspecting that the simplest would be all that was necessary, the operation was done on an outpatient basis, and I knew I would be going home this time when he was finished. He ended up performing the most invasive of the three options, even removing the plate and screws he'd put in before, and sent me home with a prescription for pain which I filled before reaching my front door. Perhaps it was a lack of faith on my part, but a miracle is by definition something you can't conjure up on your own. Could it really happen twice? I thought it best to be prepared. As it turned out, I could've saved my money; I never took a single pill.
Surely the absence of pain was blessing enough, but there was more. Aging is commonly associated with the loss of bone density and the general weakening of the skeletal structure, so as I've gotten older I've taken to combating the same with my speech, simply declaring that I have the firm muscles and strong bones promised in (Isaiah 58:9-12 MSG). As soon as I knew my elbow was broken, I heard the enemy whisper, “ Strong bones? Clearly not so much...”. But it turned out he was wrong. In a post-operative conversation, the doctor told my husband that he had a hard time putting in the screws to hold the plate in place because my bones were as strong as those of a person in their 20's! Not to give away my age, but that's several decades away from where I stand today! Again I was thrilled with the goodness of God.
Another definition of miracle is simply this: a wonder; a marvel. The Bible promises that signs and wonders will follow those who believe, and perhaps there is a purpose to their presence beyond just the joy of an unexpected blessing. They give us opportunities to testify to those who are wondering about the goodness of God, and a chance to tell them how marvelous He truly is.
“You were chosen to tell about the excellent qualities of God”
(1 Peter 2:9 GOD'S WORD)