Does God Grant Miracles?
Back in the spring of 2005 I was driving down a street in my town and saw a sign. Not like “a sign”, but an actual sign announcing an audition for the upcoming community theater play. I’d driven by it many times and never thought a thing, but on that particular day it was as if someone whispered into my ear, “You should go to that audition.” Well, the audition happened to be the very next day, but the feeling was so strong that I obeyed, prepared a song and went to the audition. All day I couldn’t figure out why I was there, but I did make some friends and have a lot of fun.
I am NOT, in any way, shape or form, an actress. So you can imagine my shock when they cast me in a lead roll. YIKES!
Well, it turned out that I really had the time of my life. I met SO many amazing people who really strengthened me during a personally difficult time, and they had no idea that I was going through my own personal hell. Heck, I even forgot my own misery and experienced great joy by interacting with so many awesome folks and accepting the challenge to develop new talents.
The play was Annie Warbucks, the sequel to Annie. The show ran for 8 days. The last two days they were set to record performances, one with each cast. I say “each cast” but there was only one cast for the adults and two casts for the children, so I had no understudy. And wouldn’t you know it, I woke up Saturday morning with THE worst case of strep throat I have probably ever had. My throat was so swollen I could barely talk and I was shaking with fever. I would wait in the wings shivering, go out on stage, perform my lines and then crash on the dressing room floor. I didn’t know if I could even sing. I was so sick I couldn’t even try.
I’m sure you can see where this is going. The moment came. I was on stage. The music for my solo began. . . and I opened my mouth, praying that I would be able to sing. . and then. . .
Let’s step back for just a moment as I share an important pre-show detail with you. I am a woman of faith. What do women of faith do? They act. How did I act? I asked my dad for a Priesthood Blessing. (If you’re not familiar with what that is, grab your local LDS (Mormon) Missionaries and ask them.) Then I prayed, a lot, and for the specific blessing of being able to sing and do well on stage. Then I moved forward in faith hoping that God had heard my prayer and saw fit to grant my request. I didn’t know if He would until the moment I opened my mouth. Did I fear that maybe my faith was insufficient? At the time. . .probably, but in hindsight I can see what an incredible amount of faith I must have had to go out on that stage, sick as a dog, and open my mouth to sing when I didn’t know if a single note would come out–AND in front of hundreds of people.
I think sometimes we tend to think that we don’t have enough faith to qualify for miracles. But our actions show how much faith we actually have. When we prayerfully ask and then move forward as if He will grant our petition, we are showing faith. Even if you are nervous or scared, if you are moving forward in spite of the fear you are exercising faith. And that’s how miracles are obtained. They may not always look the way we hope, but I have learned by experience that even if things don’t turn out the way we pray for them something good always comes of it.
Pray. Move forward. Believe.
So, would you like to hear my miracle solo? Push “play” below.
Jennifer Manges singing as “Grace” in Annie Warbucks