By David Bass
Last year, we moved to a house not far from the airport. From the time she was about eighteen months old, our daughter started taking note of all these planes now flying overhead. Whenever she heard one, she would stop whatever she was doing, her mouth would open in amazement, she would point at the nearest window if we were inside or at the sky if we were outside (bonus points if we were outside and could catch a glimpse of it), and stand in rapt attention until she couldn’t hear it anymore.
It’s easy to see why the planes were so worthy of her regard. Massive metal machines full of hundreds of humans can glide effortlessly through the sky. It feels like a miracle that airplanes can exist at all. And when a miracle flies right over your head, it is only appropriate to make note of it.
It was easy for me to miss the sound of the planes. For the most part the noise, even though it was loud, blended into the background. Only after experiencing the world through my daughter’s eyes could I realize just how many planes flew over us and stop and think just what an amazing thing that really was. After a while, I got better at noticing the planes. On rare occasions, I could even notice them before my daughter did, though she remains our family’s most accomplished airplane spotter.
Sometimes it’s easy to miss miracles that are right in our midst. There are miracles happening around us all the time, but it is easy for these miracles to blend into the background of everything else that we are busy doing. Family responsibilities, work, and even the busyness of ministry and church activities can sometimes make it hard to notice the ways that God is at work right next to us.
When I visit with groups of Cambodian pastors and hear their testimonies, I am reminded of just how active the Holy Spirit is here. I recently heard an evangelist share about how she was leading Bible studies in the local prison. Some had come to know Jesus through these Bible studies. In fact, she had brought one young man with her to this meeting. He had recently been released and wanted to learn more about this Jesus who could release him from those bonds that even a prison warden didn’t have the authority to release him from.
I heard about how twenty people were going to be baptized the following month. People were publicly declaring their faith in Jesus even though it would put them in the minority within their families and communities.
I heard from a university student who studies to be a dentist during the week and leads worship for his village church on the weekends. And there are countless other stories of God raising up new generations of Cambodians to bear witness to Jesus Christ here, and that is a miracle.
My daughter is showing me how to receive the kingdom of God like a child. I am learning to open my eyes, my ears and my heart, so that I can see and give thanks for the miracles happening all around me.
David Bass is a CBF field personnel serving alongside his wife, Lauren, in Cambodia. Learn more about and support their ministries at www.cbf.net/bass.