While I was still a fledgling in faith, I was serving in the Air Force at Fort George G. Meade in Maryland as a military intelligence analyst. For several years I worked in a windowless box, full of ineptitude, apathy, and discouragement. The one thing I took any solace in was my miniature King James New Testament Bible, which I carried in the cargo pocket of my battle fatigues. I would often read it in the break room, or outside in the sunlight where smokers and other outcasts such as myself sought refuge.
At this time, I was newly married, and new in my faith in Christ Jesus. I sought many answers in the Bible, as to how I could get through the misery of my current circumstances. Feeling trapped, I was constantly overwhelmed by a feeling of impossibility to everything. It was impossible to please my superiors, impossible to be recognized for good works, impossible to reach out to others, and impossible to make friends.
I then read Matthew 17:20:
20: And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.
What brought me to Christ was the search for truth, and I found his testimony to be true. Yet, this passage confused me. How could a man move a mountain, simply by having faith? I had faith, and yet I never felt more powerless or trapped. I went outside to my usual spot to pray and be with the Lord, a picnic bench that none of the smokers bothered to sit at. I wanted to believe that I had the power to move mountains, but I didn’t really believe in miracles.
So, I prayed to the Lord for a miracle, and I was specific. I asked, “Lord, if you really are all powerful, change this picnic table to gold, and then back again. I do not ask this to tempt you, Lord. I only ask for a sign that you are listening, and that you move in all things.”
The Lord responded to me, “I will answer this prayer.”
I must admit, the Lord’s response to me was surprising. Often, when I prayed and asked for things that I knew were probably wrong of me to ask, I felt like the child who asks the parent for something it knows it cannot have over and over only to be denied over and over. In a way, it is mischief on the part of the child, but sometimes the need is truly there. Sometimes the child needs that taste of your coffee, or to handle the fishing rod, in which case I believe God, like any good parent, acquiesces so that you may learn.
Such was the case in God’s answer to me, I believe. I sat, looking at that table, and waiting for it to change. There was the nagging part of my mind, “the realist”, saying repeatedly, “Nothing is going to happen. You’re an idiot for sitting here and staring at something that isn’t going to change.” Of course, this is the part in us that doesn’t truly believe in God’s power.
Finally, this nagging doubt got the better of me, and I started to get up from the table when I felt a still, small voice say “Look down.”
I looked down at the table, and in the middle was a fly. The fly was solid gold from head to toe, save the wings which were like flakes of crystal. And, I do not mean yellowish in color. I mean iridescent and burnished, like pure molten metal. I stared at it in wonder for a minute or two before it flew off.
Now, the skeptic may state the following: It is not a miracle that a fly have golden coloration, nor is it anything more than coincidence that it showed up at a picnic table outside where food is frequently present just at that time. The unconscious mind sees what it wants the way it wants, and connects random events together and calls them a “miracle”.
Hogwash. Gibberish from the rear end of a baboon. That fly was a miracle, period. I know that it was a miracle, not because it was golden, or because it appeared at that time and in that place. It was a miracle because I felt, very real in that moment, God’s presence in answer to my prayer. That is the miracle.
It is not a miracle that Jesus walked on water. Think about it. He had all power, and hosts of angels stood by at his command. To one with such power, walking on water is no more miraculous than breathing in and out. And, if you think about it, breathing in and out is a miracle. Life is a miracle! And, that is what I saw in that tiny golden living thing – a thing that I took for granted as detestable and vile. The fact that it was golden was just God showing off, which He has every right to do and praise Him for it.
It amazed me that God could do with a common housefly and a quiet voice, what we would demand of Him with mountain blasting and shouting. We want the flash and booming voice from a God trying to teach us humility. We are surrounded by miraculous events every second, yet we demand a sign from God. The stones cry out, and the heavens shout his name, and we ask “Where is God?”
The miracle is not out there. The miracle is in here. All you need to do is look where God tells you to look.