Sunday, May 22, 2011

God's love flows deep

Matthew 9:20-22 "And suddenly, a woman who had a flow of blood for twelve years came from behind and touched the hem of His garment. For she said to herself, 'If only I may touch His garment, I shall be made well.' But Jesus turned around, and when He saw her He said, 'Be of good cheer, daughter; your faith has made you well.' And the woman was made well from that hour." NKJ

We can find this story in Mark 5:21-43 and Luke 8:40-56.

I must say, this is one my favorite stories. It is one that blesses me deeply. It is my hope that you too see more to this story and find a deeper faith.

During this time when a woman's flow came she was considered unclean. She was an untouchable. She was not welcome near others. Friends nor family welcomed her. She was dirty. She was in pain. She was lonely. Can you see her there? In her deepest pain and she wants is to be accepted and loved. Everyone has turned away from her. She lived alone. She ate alone. For twelve years she suffered, but her faith did not waver. She hasn't found relief anywhere. No doctors have miracles for her. No answers as to why. This woman spent all she had for medical treatment. She continued to grow worse. What was she to do? To live in faith.

This woman's name isn't given. I think that is important. This isn't just one woman, but many. Many who are searching. Who are lonely and in need. All they want is one touch. But, is there there anyone willing to reach out? This woman carried this pain for twelve years. Twelve long years of being alone and feeling as though she was unworthy. Can you imagine? Maybe you too feel the same today. Do you feel the shame she carried?

As this woman approached Jesus, "For she said, 'If only I may touch His clothes, I shall be made well.'" Mark 5:28 NKJ There is a crowd around Jesus. He is surrounded, but He knows she is there. She sees Him and reaches out. She touches and she is healed before she releases her hand. It was not her touching Jesus that healed her, but her very faith in Him. Her belief.  Everyone had turned away from her, but here we see Jesus turning to her. I find comfort in that. "And Jesus, immediately knowing in Himself that power had gone out of Him, turned around in the crowd and said, 'Who  touched My clothes?'" Mark 5:30 NKJ

This woman was trembling. She was scared in this crowd. Even in a crowd she felt alone and desperate. But there was One who could bring her peace and comfort. In her need. In Jesus' perfect time He heals her. She is restored. She has life once again. I can see her walking away from this day a changed woman forever. She is accepted and loved by her Savior. I can only imagine how much her faith increased with just one touch. His love flowed into her with healing. Healing not only of her body, but her mind and heart. She was completely healed in every way. We have a mighty God who knows our need before we approach Him.

We see Paul with a thorn in his side. It doesn't say what his pain is, but we know he prays three times. He is crying out to God for relief. All he needs is a touch, but the Lord touches Paul in a different way. God is not ignoring Paul in his need. He doesn't remove the thorn, but gives him grace to endure.  "And He said unto me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me." 2 Corinthians 12:9  NKJ

Here we have two different stories of healing, but both leave us with hope. God knows the healing we need. He will give us strength to overcome and peace to endure. He is all we need. Aren't you thankful we have a God that knows each need and is there for us? He walks toward us when others turn away. It is His love that brings healing. We are made perfect in Him. We can be sure of one thing. No matter where we are we are never alone in our pain.

"For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us." Romans 8:18 NKJ

"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpassed all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:6-7 NKJ
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