Miracles, Not Just Resolutions
by Heather@Women in the Scriptures
I don’t really like making New Year resolutions. Unless they are something I’ve already been working on, I never remember to do them. They just don’t work for me.
Instead, my husband and I write down New Year Miracles. Each new year we write down three or four things that we’d like to see happen during the next year. They are always things that at the time seem utterly and completely impossible, things that if they really were to happen would indeed be miracles. Sometimes we ask for miracles for ourselves, but usually we ask for miracles to happen to people we care deeply about. Since they are things near and dear to our heart it isn’t hard to think about them often and to offer up silent and vocal prayers for them throughout the year.
My husband and I started this tradition not long after we were married and then several years ago I read this story by Elder Boyd K. Packer in which he and his wife do something similar. He said:
Donna and I attended an unusual dinner at the home of one of our beloved friends. It was a New Year’s Eve party. Our host had an activity for the evening. He read a quotation from Heber C. Kimball: “I have said often, you may write blessings for yourselves and insert every good thing you can think of, and it will all come to pass on your heads, if you do right.” (From an address in the Old Tabernacle, August 1853.)
He gave each of us a sheet of paper and an envelope and suggested we write upon the paper the things we hoped to achieve in the new year. We were asked to seal the envelope and put our name on it. “I will take these to the bank and put them in the vault,” he said. “A year from now we will meet again and have a dinner and I will deliver them to you. And we will tell if you wish, how nearly we have achieved our goals.” We thoughtfully set our goals that night and sealed them up, and they were delivered to the vault to lay unopened for a full year. Six things were on our list, each relating to a blessing for someone dear. Each seemed near to the impossible. One, for instance related to a sister and … marriage. Worthiness was no problem; it was her body so crippled with disease that a [marriage] was out of the question, or was it?
The year rolled by and the envelopes were delivered to us again. During the year, with those goals in mind, we had prayed now and then, and then little opportunities came by. They would have gone unnoticed if we had not set the goals. We were able to move forward, first with one goal, then with another. Five impossible things had happened. The sixth related to the solution of a problem of a friend. It was on New Year’s Eve that I received a telephone call from across the country. My friend excitedly told me that his problem had been solved. He knew nothing of the notes in the envelope.
Last year I wrote down four miracles, things that I was sure could never happen that year but which my heart yearned for desperately. I can bear strong testimony that God is still a God of miracles because one of my impossible things was answered directly this year, another was answered in a roundabout way, and one of the miracles I prayed for two years ago was answered this year. I’ve noticed that sometimes God doesn’t always perform the miracle in the year I pray for it but I’ve come to trust in God’s timing and wisdom. I know that the other two miracles I prayed for will someday be answered in His own time and His own way.
Perhaps these impossible things would still have happened if I hadn’t been praying for them to happen, but then they wouldn’t have been miracles. Miracles are things that need to be asked for… they take faith. Jesus never performed a miracle unless someone specifically sought him out and asked for it. They demonstrated their faith in His power by being humble enough to ask Him for the miracle they wanted, whether it was for themselves or someone they loved. If we want to see miracles we have to have the faith to ask for them.
I am asking for some pretty impossible things this year. Part of my heart doubts that there is any way they will be able to happen, but the other part of my heart is full of faith in God. I know that with Him nothing is impossible… even miracles.