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Do You Believe In Miracles?

Updated: Dec 22, 2023

The Alpena News

MAR 25, 2023


Everyday Faith

A few weeks ago, we celebrated the 43rd anniversary of what has since been labeled “the Miracle on Ice.”

In the 1980 Olympics in Lake Placid, New York, a group of upstart American college hockey players pulled off one of the greatest miracles in the history of the Olympics. They faced a Soviet team that consisted of professional players, and the backstory to the game was full with political tensions being played off the ice between the two countries.

The Americans had put a good run together to get to the point where they were going to face the Russians in the semifinals of that tournament, but absolutely no one gave us a legitimate chance. The game was played on the ice, but, because of the sentiment at the time, it might as well have been played on a battlefield.

It was the United States vs. the Soviet Union.

Our 4-3 win that day was capped off with Al Michaels, the announcer for the game, exuberantly asking the question, “Do you believe in miracles?”

And that’s a fair question. Do you believe in miracles?

There are times in our lives where it seems we have run out of options — no matter what we do, we have reached the end of the road. And, at that point, the only way things are going to change is through divine intervention — a miracle.

When my wife and I were raising young children, we found ourselves wearing out the pavement between Alpena and Ann Arbor. Three of our four kids had serious eye issues that required specialized treatment, and, according to our doctor at the Kellogg Eye Center, he treated four main eye problems and our family had three of them.

Our youngest had a muscle issue that didn’t allow her eyes to work together correctly, and it affected her vision and gave her headaches. She was starting to learn letters and how to read — we just didn’t know the extent of how this was going to impact her life.

We discovered the issue at a young age and we hoped she might just grow out of it.

Each time we went in for an evaluation, the doctors would run her through tests to see if there was any change. And, each time, she would leave with sunglasses on after her eyes had been dilated.

Eventually, the doctors decided that they could no longer wait. Karli needed surgery.

Needless to say, eye surgeries are delicate, and the outcomes are uncertain. But the problem was serious enough that we didn’t have any other options.

The decision was made to move ahead with it.

A month before the surgery, we did one final evaluation, and it revealed exactly what we had been monitoring for years. Final details were confirmed for the surgery date, and all that was left was the waiting.

During that month, we felt led specifically to pray for Karli’s healing and asked some of our closest friends to do the same.

It’s one thing to have to go through a surgery yourself, but to watch your young child have to go through with it … well, it breaks your heart. And that’s where we found ourselves …

The morning of the surgery came, and we had worked through the details of the day with Karli, of course trying to spin the surgery as positively as possible. We arrived early to go through the pre-op procedures to get her ready.

Throughout the years, we had worked with a team of doctors, so one of her regular doctors came in the pre-op room to run some last-minute tests. As he started to go through her tests, a puzzled look came over his face. Without a word, he pressed on.

After a few minutes, he left the room saying that he would be back. With Karli already in her gown and her eye marked for surgery, we waited.

And that’s when the lead surgeon came in the room. He had already been in surgery, but the other doctor requested he come to check out Karli, too.

As we sat there watching him run the same tests as the previous doctor, he just kept saying, “Hmmm.”

When he was done, he turned to us and said that Karli’s condition was gone.

Both doctors had run their battery of tests, and they could no longer find any of her symptoms. There was no medical explanation!

He told Karli she could change her clothes, we signed a couple of forms, and, in no time at all, we had left the hospital without ever having had surgery!

Amazed … relieved … thankful.

I can’t tell you why God intervenes in some situations and not in others, but I would simply suggest that we need to leave room for God to be God. He can intervene, and he can answer prayers that need a miracle.

We serve the same God today that we see all throughout the Bible. God’s story is a miraculous one from the beginning of time, and what he did ages ago he can still do today.

So, yes, Al Michaels, I certainly do believe in miracles.

I certainly do!

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