Mark 5:25-33 and 34 ESV
From the Jar
At one point in my life I struggled with what FAITH really is…
It was the 70’s.
While the 1960’s were known for social reform, the 1970’s are remembered for personal reform. Many referred to it as the ‘me’ decade. (https://www.encyclopedia.com/history/culture-magazines/1970s-me-decade)
As a young adult being called to ministry, I saw an increased interest in matters of faith in people on a personal level.
While the 1960’s focused on reforming the church, during the 1970’s many people were considering God in a personal sense. The question, ‘who is God to me’ was at hand.
Our spirituality became personal.
A separate segment within the body of the mainstream Christian church explored what it looked to God to speak to us in personal ways.
During the 1970’s I became interested in how I practiced what I believed. Personal healing and understanding my gifts became important to me.
God sent specific people to me to show me how they interacted with God. One man I met had strong gifts of prophecy. He was part of a very mainstream denomination that did not openly focus on prophecy, but God used his gifts in his congregation in mighty ways.
I met others who had the gift of healing and they quietly used their personal gifts of healing others for God.
As a result of the people I met who practiced their spiritual gifts, I questioned what my spiritual gifts were. I prayed about it a lot. I learned to sit with God and listen.
I spent time with people who visited the sick.
I also studied scripture looking for what Jesus practiced and taught his disciples about using their gifts.
I was fascinated by the story of the woman in Mark 5:25-33, “And there was a woman who had had a discharge of blood for twelve years, and who had suffered much under many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was no better but rather grew worse. She had heard the reports about Jesus and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his garment. For she said, “If I touch even his garments, I will be made well.” And immediately the flow of blood dried up, and she felt in her body that she was healed of her disease. And Jesus, perceiving in himself that power had gone out from him, immediately turned about in the crowd and said, “Who touched my garments?” And his disciples said to him, “You see the crowd pressing around you, and yet you say, ‘Who touched me?’” And he looked around to see who had done it. But the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came in fear and trembling and fell down before him and told him the whole truth.”
The woman had a persistent problem and in order to be healed she spent all of her money visiting various physicians looking for relief.
All of her efforts had been in vain.
She heard about Jesus and His healing power. Probably because she was a woman suffering from a female issue she decided to approach Jesus quietly. She didn’t want to draw attention to her constant bleeding so she decided to touch His tunic.
She believed if she could just touch his clothing she would be healed. She WAS healed when she touched Jesus’ tunic. What she didn’t expect was that Jesus would feel healing power leave His body.
When Jesus turned and asked who touched His clothing, His disciples only thought about many people in the crowd were touching Him. What was fascinating is that Jesus knew He could find ‘the one’. The woman who had been healed fell at the feet of Jesus.
Then in Mark 5:34 Jesus, “said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace, and be healed of your disease.”
In my mind this story of healing far exceeded other accounts of healing. When people openly came to Jesus to ask for healing or when Jesus openly sought people out to heal them, it was a miracle. But in this case, Jesus didn’t seek her out. She didn’t openly seek Jesus out. She believed that if she could quietly touch a small piece of His clothing she would be healed.
According to what Jesus said, because she believed that, she was healed.
When I was younger I thought about that a lot. I wondered if my faith was that strong.
At some point I came to realize it wasn’t about the strength (or the amount) of her faith. It was about who she believed Jesus WAS. She believed He was the Christ, the Son of the living God.
She didn’t think about her ability to believe. She focused solely on Jesus. She knew Jesus could heal her.
She believed Jesus could do anything.
And He did.
Jesus made it personal. He didn’t have to seek her out after she was healed, but He wanted to speak to her. He wanted to bless her.
Today’s Spiritual Practice is: Believe in Jesus
Believe that Jesus is God and will heal and help you.
In God, Deborah