To understand the mysteries of life you must look around and within. You will see patterns everywhere; patterns that seem to manifest themselves over and over again.
- Bryant H. McGill
This year, I gave up diet soda and Starbucks for Lent.
On the very first day of Lent, I arrived at work and found a bottle of diet soda on my desk, left over from a previous lunch. Temptation staring me straight in the eyes. This was gonna be hard.
I turned on my computer and settled in, wishing I at least had a Starbucks coffee in my hand. I have one of those quote-a-day calendars with an inspirational saying for every day of the year. Well, when I flipped the page on my calendar, I got a very important message: “Eat better.” An odd quote, but just what I needed to read. It was like God was telling me to ignore that diet soda and whatever other temptations might be thrown my way. He was rooting me on.
The miracles didn’t end there. I came home from a weekend at my parents’ house, only to discover I’d forgotten my handbag. I wasn’t worried about surviving a week without my wallet or keys. It was my work ID badge that would be hard to live without. When I emptied my overnight bag, though, I found the badge at the very bottom. I have no idea how that one item, out of all things, escaped from my handbag.
The next weekend, I walked into a dressing room and spotted a single bead with Jesus’ image waiting for me. After that, I went to the doctor and received some truly incredible news. And, last week, I randomly stumbled upon a reading from Charles Spurgeon that very specifically addressed a problem I’d been going through. All tiny wonders that God sprinkled throughout my Lenten journey.
I have a friend who always asks me what the point of Lent is–“Why would God want you to give something up if it makes you happy?” It’s a good question. I do miss caffeine. I really do. Especially my tall skinny mochas from Starbucks. But those sacrifices, small as they are, have woken me up to more miracles. They’ve given me “new eyes” so I can better make out all the little ways that God is working in my life.
And that’s a different kind of happiness, isn’t it? One that’s worth more than all the tall skinny mochas in the world.
Have you experienced a miracle–big or small–this Lent? Share your story below!
Diana Aydin is an associate editor for Mysterious Ways magazine. When she was just a little kid, she got her first dose of the miraculous. She’s been on the lookout for miracles ever since. Her favorite time of the day is lunch time, when she gets to step away from the workaday world and enjoy a bit of God’s wonder, if only for an hour!