God is God, Even When the Miracle Doesn't Come

photo by forest wander via creative commons

I heard the story of a miracle this week on the radio.

A man had called into the station, and shared about how his baby was born weeks and weeks premature.  How unlikely it was that she would survive.  How he and his wife and everyone they knew prayed and prayed -- and their daughter lived.  How good God is because he saved their baby.

I am so glad that these parents didn't have to learn what it feels like to have your baby die.  To watch her dwindle away into death (I am grateful that I don't know what that feels like either).  I am glad for their miracle.

But as I listened, tears welled up in my eyes.  Angry tears.

Their story, it seems to imply that God is only as good, only as big, as his miracles.

And that, I think, is simply not true.

God is good even when your baby dies.  God is faithful when you cradle her lifeless form in your arms for the one and only time in this life.  God is loving when grief and pain threaten to tear you apart, body and soul.

God is God, period.  And he is faithful. 

God is God when the cancer does not go into remission.

God is God when your marriage is dissolving around you.

God is God when depression takes over.

God is God when people kill other people.

God is God when debilitating pain lingers for years and years and years.

God is God when death visits suddenly.

God is God when the addiction always wins.

God is God when the life you thought you'd have is a mockery of the one you find yourself  battling through.

God is God when your body is breaking. When your heart is breaking.

God is God, and he is not limited by his miracles.

Because which is more miraculous: that God would deliver the miracle, or that God would heal our hearts when the miracle doesn't come?

It is miraculous to me that my soul is not splintered into a billion, billion pieces by the ravages of dysfunction, depression, disordered eating, and my daughter's death. 

It is a miracle that God would see my pain and care, and act.  Even if he didn't act to save my daughter. 

Even though I still have questions, even though it hurts and it hurts, my still-beating heart is the miracle. 

So while I am grateful for the family whose premature baby beat the odds and lives . . . her life is not the measure of God's goodness, or power, or love.  

"Jesus and the disciples recrossed the sea to Jesus’ hometown. They were hardly out of the boat when some men carried a paraplegic on a stretcher and set him down in front of them. Jesus, impressed by their bold belief, said to the paraplegic, “Cheer up, son. I forgive your sins.” Some religion scholars whispered, “Why, that’s blasphemy!”
"Jesus knew what they were thinking, and said, “Why this gossipy whispering? Which do you think is simpler: to say, ‘I forgive your sins,’ or, ‘Get up and walk’? Well, just so it’s clear that I’m the Son of Man and authorized to do either, or both. . . .” At this he turned to the paraplegic and said, “Get up. Take your bed and go home.”" 
"He sent me to preach good news to the poor, heal the heartbroken, announce freedom to all captives, pardon all prisoners."
What do you think? 
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