I don’t know… but I have a feeling this is how my future posts will be all about: the countdown of anything about religion, told in my own light. I hope I’ll find new topic for posts soon, lest I bore you with these top five religious stuffs. Having said that, I’ll begin today with another countdown. Here goes…
When we’re kids, we knew the Holy Bible, not as a Word of God revealed to mankind for their salvation which finds its fulfillment at the Paschal Mystery of Christ, but rather, as a collection of the downright awesome miracles that happened in the olden times. It carries Moses, Abraham, Elijah and other colorful characters that light up the imagination of the young. Jesus, in particular, is the main man of marvels for any Christian gradeschooler as there are four Gospels chronicling (may word bang ganun?) his miracles to its juiciest details. Jesus may not have superstrength, own a Batcave, sling a web or have adamantium claws sprouting at his knuckles, but for any kid in a Christian Living classes at school, the Son of God definitely rocks. I know each of us got his own pick for the top five coolest miracles, but bear with me as I present now my own choices.
Our countdown opens with “Walking on Water” as number five of our list. Come on, now. Who among the Filipinos have been to the beaches, rivers, lakes or even the perennial floods of España and Pateros and not wished to have this ability? For kids, it surely beats cannonball and tamblingan sa tulay on the level of impressiveness. However, this miracle suffers on its usefulness to others. Jesus meant to save the world, not play Baywatch to Peter all the time. And so, for the merit of pure showmanship, “Walking on Water” lands on number five.
Next on our countdown is “Calming the Sea Storm.” Now, Ororo Munro of X-Men fame may share this particular ability of Jesus, but what’s really cool about this particular event is the low-key, happy-go-jackpot image which Jesus chose to exude. You see, while everyone panicked and worried about getting their luggage wet, Jesus lounges unperturbed at the cabin (Peter’s boat has no sundeck), short of wearing Bermuda shorts and sipping pineapple daiquiri. When all the apostles are ready for a Poseidon adventure, Jesus casually told the wind and the sea, “Hoy, ano ba… te’mek kayo dyan!” Suddenly, there’s no storm. Only a salty crew of apostles in life-vests staring at the clear open sea.
Bagging the third place is the “Raising of Lazarus.” This event prefigures Christ’s own resurrection event, which is seriously the greatest miracle of Jesus. Now, the cool factor with this miracle is in the fact that Lazarus had been dead for days when he was revived from his tomb. Talk about Twenty-eight Weeks, Dawn of the Dead and any of those George Romero movies. Questions come into mind: If you’re bound from head to foot with long strips of linen and is sewn in to a shroud, been dead for days, hasn’t eaten anything, with maggots feasting on your major muscles, how can you walk out of your own grave? Only by miracle, of course. Next question, if Lazarus had been dead and rotting for some time and was later revived, how would Mary and Martha feel every time they sleep, knowing that their once-dead and grave-stinky brother is in a room next to them? Also, if a person who where once flat-liners had NDE (Near Death Experience), what would Lazarus’ experience be called? The answer is left for us to conjecture.
Our number two spot goes to “Changing Water into Wine.” Now, “Changing Water into Wine” may not be a hit for kids, but for a Filipino male, sixteen years old and above, this is definitely the coolest miracle. To the hearts of every magbabarik (batangueño word for, uhhm, liquor aficionado), if Jesus lives today, he will be recognized as the Ultimate Tanggero, the real and personal God and Savior of every inuman.
And now, for our number one miracle of Jesus… it’s the “Feeding of the Five Thousand!” Yehey! Now, if you’re not happy and clapping with my choice, chances are you’re the kind who will vote for “Changing Water into Wine” as the number one, you inebriated soak, you. But let me first tell you the merit of this miracle. Aside from the fact that this foreshadows the mysteries of the Eucharist, this is one miracle with the most number of people benefited on it. The bible noted that the nourished population is five thousand men, not counting women and children. Many books would infer that since in a family of an average middle eastern man, there’s one wife and two children at least, the rough estimate of happily fed Jews would be around 25,000! And it only took two loaves and some fish. At may leftovers pa! It’s the ultimate catering service miracle, my brothers and sisters! Now, segue tayo on the present world crisis on food shortage. Some scripture scholar speculated that the actual miracle of the event is that when Jesus broke and blest the bread, some witnesses at the time were inspired to share their own food to others and then voluntarily yet anonymously added their baon to what Jesus has prepared. The miracle, some said (though not magisterially recognized) , is that Jesus pioneered the idea of a Potluck. Everyone is fed, everyone was able to share, everyone was happy. .. You know where I am leading here. You know why I chose this as the number one miracle. You know it and you believe in it. It’s the one miracle we hope to happen again, it is the one miracle we are all capable of, it is the one miracle that can help the world if only we take cue to what had happened to that fateful evening at the Galilee beach, two thousand years ago.
Let the Jesus in us break and bless the bread on our hands and reach out to share it to others. Amen.
(i’ll be gone for three days again. hehehe…)