Overthinking the Miracle


This morning the rains doused everything and then moved on. The clouds broke and the early morning sun broke through. Coming low off the horizon it backlit a wet landscape. I looked out and saw the bare and black tree branches dripping with tiny water droplets and in the brilliant sun they appeared as a million diamonds. I was momentarily stunned.

I said to my son-in-law, sitting at the table eating eggs on toast, “Andy, look.” I called to Pam in the kitchen, “Look.”

In the moment I didn’t know what to do. I couldn’t just go back to reading the paper, so I looked again at the trees and the serried rows of perfectly spaced gems glinting in the sunlight. I knew this moment mattered, but I didn’t know what to do with it.

How can I save this moment? What does this mean? What should I do about it? I need to make sense of something that is natural and yet paranormal. I should get my phone and take a picture. (I’m a lousy nature photographer.) This is transcendent. (I’m just making this up.)

I went back to the trees, gazing at the wet black boughs. How fast the morning sun rises. Now the angle of light was off. The water droplets went dark. I went back to the paper.

Hours later as I was shaving, I saw the diamonds. The whole scene was there again, as scintillating as the first moment. I didn’t understand it, finally. It didn’t make sense. I did not find its ‘meaning.’ It simply was, and I was simply grateful.

I thought in that pause over the sink, my face covered in white, This is why the mystics say, “Don’t think; just look.”

10 Responses to Overthinking the Miracle
  1. Marilyn Topar
    January 16, 2016 | 7:55 pm

    To look and be grateful – can’t get much better than that!

  2. Michael Anderson
    January 17, 2016 | 8:03 am

    Savoring. Saving. Is this what Duns Scotus meant by an encounter with thisness? Your writing is your saving. Thanks for letting us all see what you saw.

  3. Arden
    January 17, 2016 | 10:29 am

    That is a real spiritual AHA moment! What a beautiful picture of GOd’s diamonds!

  4. Susan
    January 17, 2016 | 12:22 pm

    I was right there with you . . . visualizing the diamonds. Glad you didn’t snap a pic but instead remained present. Beautiful!

  5. Eric
    January 18, 2016 | 8:41 am

    Perhaps the take away is God’s miracles happen all the time, take their different form at different times. Just get you head out of the paper long enough to look for them in the every day beauty all around you.

  6. cynthia klokel
    January 18, 2016 | 10:18 am

    Beautiful imagery,David. I sometimes wonder if this is how a small child sees the world.

  7. Marcia Meinerth
    January 20, 2016 | 6:34 pm

    Hmm, and in my life time how many of those miracles did I allow to just float by, right in front of me, but they floated non the less. These days I try to remind myself that I am sitting right there in an orchestra seat with NO obstructed view!

  8. Naudain
    February 15, 2016 | 7:59 pm

    new email. I didn’t know you had resumed the blog and I don’t want to miss them. this computer is new and I’m not very good at it. I need more lessons from my grandson which I will get when I visit next month thanks naudain

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