January 8, 2022
MIRACLES NEVER CEASE!
Robert Wise explores the world of divine interventions from an objective point of view. An Archbishop in the Communion of Evangelical Episcopal Churches with a Ph.D., Rev. Wise relates his interviews with persons who experienced the touch of God.
UNEXPECTED GIFTS WITH GRACE
As I talked with people who had miraculous experiences, I have picked up stories of people who also developed additional gifts of grace as they came into a new or deepened relationship with the Holy Spirit. Sometimes these spiritual endowments almost defied imagination. Here’s an unusual example from Peru.
Martin de Porres was born into a world of prejudice, but this black man turned rejection into faith, not friction. Few Peruvians would accept a mixed-race illegitimate child, so the deck was stacked against de Porres from the moment he was born. His father, a Spanish nobleman, refused to marry his mother, a freed slave from Panama. De Porres and his younger sister, Juana, grew up poor, socially demeaned, and unacknowledged by their father. To heal the wounds of rejection, he plunged into the Christian faith. The result was remarkable.
Associates said they saw him levitate. He could communicate with animals and be in two places simultaneously. Yet, in Lima, Peru, Martin de Porres was reviled by many simply because of the color of his skin. Local law even forbade him from becoming a full member of the religious order to which he devoted his life. He was able to join a Dominican monastery, wear the robes, and live among the other residents—but only as a worker who cleaned and did laundry. Martin made it his lifelong objective and practice to turn prejudice into spiritual passion.
De Porres became a most remarkable person. As he moved among the people, he soon developed a reputation for redeeming people. Frugal and humble, he was so devout that after his death eighty-four miracles were attributed to him.
De Porres was said to be able to go through locked doors. He was spotted in faraway Mexico and Japan, despite never having left Peru. He and a group of novices found themselves miles from the monastery and late to prayer, he asked them to take his hands. In an instant, the group was back home.
De Porres’s boundless compassion extended to the lowliest of creatures. He was told to set out poisons to get rid the monastery of pests, but it pained de Porre to do so. He went into the garden and called to the rats quietly. He warned them not to eat the poison and said he would be happy to feed them in the garden every day, so long as they stopped bothering the monks. The rats behaved themselves.
How do you relate to such descriptions? I admit that I would have been skeptic if I had not seen wild birds fly down on Agnes Sanford’s veranda and take a piece of bread out of her hand. Agnes had powerful spiritual abilities to related to nature. My time with her taught me that Martin De Porres’s gifts were examples of how grace can transform our abilities, even when the impartations are unexpected. How about you? An encouragement here? You never can tell. Remember to expect the unexpected.
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By the way, I’d love to hear your story if you’ve experienced a divine intervention.
Send it to me at Wise on Miracles@gmail.com.
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MIRACLES NEVER CEASE,
where I post interviews with people sharing their experiences with divine encounters!
Let the miracles begin!