Do you believe in miracles?
In my pondering over the past few months, one particular word has surfaced repeatedly. That word is orientation. At its root is the word orient, which means “east,” itself a derivative of the Latin word oriri, meaning “to rise.” Orientation is arranging oneself in a certain direction, that certain direction being the rising sun.
We take for granted the fact that the sun rises. It just becomes light in the morning. That’s what happens. But if you get up in the cloak of darkness and go and sit on a mountaintop in the night-cold and wait for the sun to rise, when it does—slowly, slowly, triumphantly, inevitably, humbly—it is absolutely stunning. It feels very much like a miracle. It was dark. And cold. Now it is light. Warmth is spreading. I can see to see. I can behold the glory.
This week’s question is timed intentionally for Easter Sunday. More so than any other, this day asks people to believe in a miracle that even those who witnessed it found impossible. I am not equipped to address the resurrection of Jesus. I can only say that when I went to the mountaintop in the dark of night and oriented myself to the rising light, I saw something mundane transform into something miraculous. When I orient myself toward that which rises as opposed to that which degrades or demeans or depresses or denies, I orient myself toward believing.
And here’s one last thing that feels incredibly powerful. When I wrote this, it didn’t occur to me that the word Easter, like the word orientation, is built on the word for “east” and its connection to “dawn.” That connection now seems so obvious, I don’t know how I missed it. But when it dawned on me, it was like being struck forcefully and gracefully by the Spirit. It proves another small but mighty example of the divine waiting to be witnessed in the familiar, a miracle rising out of the mundane.
What about you? Do you believe in miracles?