Saturday, March 15, 2014

the Fringe

the Fringe
There is a report given in the New Testament books of Matthew, Mark, and Luke about a woman who was healed by Jesus in a remarkable way, and I have found that I identify with her and find grace in this record. (Her story can be found in Matthew  9:20 - 22, Mark 5:25 - 34, and Luke 8: 43 - 48.)

As I read, first I was moved by the realization her of being sick (hemorrhaging) for twelve years. How she must have  suffered! The constant blood loss would have led to weakness and more. She was probably ostracized from her society, too. 

Next, her faith impacted me. She was sure that she could be healed by touching the fringe of the garment Jesus wore. And she pressed her way through a crowd to touch Him. When she knew she was healed, I wonder if she felt a little guilty and ashamed for 'stealing' her healing. Of course, I really do not know her position in her society, so I cannot know why she chose to sneak through a crowd and touch Jesus' cloak without talking to Him. Maybe it was the most correct thing for a woman - and one who was unclean at that - to do in that situation. In spite of that, I suspect it felt a bit underhanded. 

Then, Jesus asked who touched Him. Were I in her place, I think I would fear that He would be displeased and would reverse the healing. I would have felt ashamed and wanted to hide and disappear. But she went before Him (and the whole crowd) and 'told Him the whole truth'. I see that as desperate courage on her part. 

And finally, Jesus' loving, kind response to her must have brought relief and a flood of gratitude. She must have loved Him with everything she was! 

I want to be just like her. I want to recognize my needs, have the outrageous faith to 'touch His garment', the desperate courage to come before His face, and the love and gratitude in response to all the healing and cleansing that I receive from Him. 
Coram Deo. (Before the face of GOD)

Mark 5:27 (AMP) She had heard the reports concerning Jesus, and she came up behind Him in the throng and touched His garment, 28 For she kept saying, If I only touch His garments, I shall be restored to health. 29 And immediately her flow of blood was dried up at the source, and she felt in her body that she was healed of her ailment. 30 And Jesus, recognizing in Himself that the power proceeding from Him had gone forth, turned around immediately in the crowd and said, Who touched My clothes? ... 33 But the woman, knowing what had been done for her, though alarmed and frightened and trembling, fell down before Him and told Him the whole truth. 34 And He said to her, Daughter, your faith (your trust and confidence in Me, springing from faith in God) has restored you to health. Go in (into) peace and be continually healed and freed from your disease.

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