(Photo: Scott Murray)

(Contnd from entry 95)

The 2nd fall of the Jesus picture

On the 5th July 2012, a week after Margaret got the diagnosis of stomach cancer, the picture of Jesus fell off the table for a second time. Margaret had smoked in the past and naturally with all the stress she was under felt like taking up smoking again. She was going out to the front door to assess the weather before going to the shop for cigarettes. As she passed the table in the hall, the picture came off the table and landed on the floor. I was in the living room and heard the clatter. She took it as a warning not to buy cigarettes and she hasn’t smoked since.

It was in the months following when she was undergoing chemotherapy prior to her operation that we realised what a fortunate thing it was that she wasn’t smoking. The chemo affected her throat badly. It would have been ten times worse if she had been smoking.

The 3rd fall of the picture

This happened on the 13th Oct. Margaret is a keen gardener and when she opened the cupboard in the hall she noticed a bag of daffodil bulbs. She thought she would plant them, despite being tired and weak from the effects of the chemo. As she put her hand out for the bag, the picture of Jesus again fell off the table. Needless to say she abandoned the idea of planting the bulbs.

On both occasions we both took it that the fall of the picture was telling Margaret not to do something that would be harmful for her.

In all of these supernatural happenings there were numerous lessons for me.

Lesson 1

From all the things that have happened – and I could tell of many more – it became abundantly clear that only a supernatural power could be behind these events. Before 2008 I found it difficult to believe in the resurrection of Jesus and in miracles in general. But what happened has convinced me that Christ is indeed risen and that he is a living reality.

Lesson 2

What happened demonstrated the nature of God in many wonderful ways: that he is a God who cares; that he is a God who knows everything, even our innermost thoughts; that he is beyond anything we can imagine or think.

Lesson 3

Christ didn’t promise that we would not suffer but that he would be with us through the suffering. For the Christian, death is not the end but the beginning of a new life.

Plotting one’s position on a chart

As I indicated previously, in my younger days I was an agnostic, relying on reason to a great extent. What would convince me of the Christian message? For a sailor to plot his position on a chart he needs at least two compass bearings and preferably three. Where the lines converge, that is his position. The more bearings he has, the more sure he can be of his position. What happened to us could be described as multiple bearings. Their very variety and precision compels us to trust in them, or rather in Being behind them. The position indicated by the multiple bearings that happened to us is the risen Christ.