"From this hour I ordain myself loos'd of limits and imaginary lines, going where I list, my own master total and absolute, Listening to others, considering well what they say, Pausing, searching, receiving, contemplating, Gently, but with undeniable will, divesting myself of the holds that would hold me."
Walt Whitman (1819-92)
"When I look back now over my life and call to mind what I might have had simply for taking and did not take, my heart is like to break."
Akhenaton (d. c.1354 BC)
And now, the current weather, from some random person we pulled off the street:
Thursday, December 11, 2003
A New Leg to Stand On
mir-a-cle Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English, from Old French, from Late Latin miraculum, from Latin, a wonder, marvel, from mirari to wonder at
Date: 12th century
1 : an extraordinary event manifesting divine intervention in human affairs
2 : my left leg
It's not many people that can attest first hand to an actual honest to God (pardon the pun) miracle. I'm one of them.
And I'm not talking about one of those events that could by just as easily explained by circumstances or random chance. I'm talking here of a miracle that can be measured on a yardstick, that is completely unexplainable by medical science alone.
I promise you that what I'm about to write is as true as it comes. I was there and it happened to me. I'm skeptical by nature, but sometimes divine intervention is the only way to explain things. (Actually, its probably more often than we think, but that's another discussion.)
I was 14, I think, in ninth grade.
There was a local pastor named Wayne Miller who was starting a non-denominational church. It had actually began in a friend's living room and grown from there. This particular church was the heart of a spiritual movement in the area that was affecting almost all of the churches. Why? This guy's church actually had signs and wonders, on a regular basis.
Yeah, you heard me. Signs and wonders.
Stuff like talking in tongues, prophecies, and healings.
Things they never told us about in the Presbyterian Sunday school classes.
(I know that some of you are gonna want to leave this blog right now, but hang in here with me. I'm not gonna hit you over the head with a Bible or anything. I do promise this will be worth your reading time.)
It hit the entire town's Christian community like a sledgehammer, and upset a lot of people that were comfortable in their more placid ways, and attracted a great many people such as myself who wanted to be close to something that incredible. Since we were in the time period right at the end of the Jesus Movement, a lot of the people involved were quite young. Then again, there were a lot of middle aged couples too.
At 14, I was experiencing the results of an unfortunate growth spurt I had in junior high school. I shot up several inches in a very short time, and when all was said and done I found myself with an odd result.
My left leg was over an inch shorter than my right leg.
This caused me a lot of problems, because it was really obvious. One pants leg would break right, and the other one would be high waters or dragging under my shoe. So, we had to get a seamstress to custom hem every single pair of pants that I owned, from my jeans to my suit.
Once that was done, they fit properly, breaking right on both legs and I don't think you could tell that I was lopsided.
Until one night that changed my life.
Back then, they used to have things called "sharing groups." In suburbia, groups of people would get together once or twice a week at each other's homes to study the Bible or have prayer. Today they would call these groups Bible studies, but back then they were less structured.
Especially when Wayne Miller was there. You never really knew WHAT would happen.
So, on this night the sharing group was at our home. They had camped out in our rec room and I was in the den watching TV. After a little while, my dad came in and got me to go out and play a couple of songs on my guitar so everyone could sing. That was pretty normal.
But then, in front of the entire group, he said that now we were going to pray for my leg.
I'm pretty much panicking, but there was not a lot I could do about it. They pulled two captain's chairs opposite each other, and I sat in one while Wayne sat across from me. He held both of my feet together. It was REALLY obvious that they were not the same length.
Then they all started praying. Several prayed in tongues. I prayed too, even though I felt like bolting from the room.
And that's when I felt my heels sliding against each other. My left leg was getting LONGER.
No, I'm not making this up. This happened.
After just a few moments, my legs were the same length. Wayne started hollering in joy, because he had been holding them and felt it too.
I stood up, and my left pants leg was too high. It had fit three minutes earlier.
I felt wonderful, touched, awed. Mostly awed.
Getting a personal intervention from the Creator will do that to ya.
Afterwards, I had to get all of my pants redone again to make the legs equal. Now its thirty years later and my leg has remain healed.
So often we see the charlatans on TV or at "revivals" who have a person planted in the audience, or who aren't really healing anything verifiable. "Oh, the pain's gone!" is hard to measure. An inseam going from 28.5" to 30" is pretty dramatic though. And I will always know that it happened.
Because I was there.
I felt my heels slide.
And that's proof enough for me.
When a man takes one step toward God, God takes more steps toward that man than there are sands in the worlds of time.
The Work of the Chariot