The Tenacity of Faith

As Jesus was following the synagogue ruler, Jairos, to heal his dying daughter, the crowd pressed in on Jesus. One person in the crowd, a woman, who had suffered from a twelve year long hemorrhage, was convinced that if she touched his clothes she would be healed. When she got close enough, she reached out and touched his clothes; immediately she felt Jesus’ healing power flow into her body and restore her. However, Jesus felt that same power leave and turned to ask who had touched him. Due to the crowd, his disciples were incredulous, because with the crowd pressing in on him, many had touched him, but Jesus kept asking who had touched him. Finally the woman realized that she needed to tell Jesus what she had done. Fearfully, she explained her actions to Jesus.

This woman displayed tenacity of faith; she was convinced that Jesus could make her well. She didn’t ask, she just reached out and touched his clothes and was made well. This makes her unique. Most others came to Jesus and asked him to heal them, but she reached out and took her healing. Jesus acknowledged her faith; he didn’t rebuke her for not asking. At times desperation pushes people to the point of taking what they need from Jesus/God. What is truly amazing is that Jesus was not offended. Normally if someone takes something that is ours without our asking, our sense of justice desires retribution. This woman took power from Jesus without asking him and he demanded nothing from her. Rather he seemed to honor her bold faith. He told her that her faith had made her well and that she should go in peace. Why would he tell her to go in peace? The woman had been afraid to tell Jesus what she had done. By telling her to go in peace, Jesus addressed her fearful spirit. Even though she had taken the power without asking, Jesus blessed her with peace, so that she was healed in body and in spirit. Once again we see how very different Jesus was (and is) from us. He gives freely even at times when we do not ask, but take from what is his and make it ours. He also addressed not only our physical needs, but blesses us with peace, so that we may enjoy what he has so freely given to us. As always Jesus gives us a model for how we should live and relate to others that contrasts with our normal way of functioning.

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