“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.’” - Mark 5:27
News traveled fast, even before televisions, radios, and social media. Reports about Jesus spread across the region like wildfire. Wherever he went, an eager crowd gathered to hear him teach, to witness or experience his miraculous work. Despite opposition from religious leaders, Jesus had built a reputation as a wise and powerful man who spoke with new authority. Then, as now, celebrities and powerful people were revered. Even their clothing was thought to possess or transmit power; one needed only to touch it. While this blending of religious and superstitious beliefs might seem odd to us, it was quite common at the time.
The hemorrhaging woman was sure that she could be healed just by touching Jesus’ robe. She was so sure, in fact, that she decided to break the law. What did she have to lose? Without his healing touch, there was no hope. Weak and frail after years of illness, she struggled to move against the pressing crowd. And yet, she mustered up her remaining strength and pushed past every person and fear that blocked her path to Jesus. Keep going. Keep searching. Keep hoping. With every step, she reminded herself that merely touching his garment would make her well. This courageous woman would not be deterred - by the law, society, physical pain, or fear. She had such faith in the healing power and authority of Jesus that she would either get to him or die trying. He was worth every exhausting step she took.
Even in our convenient and comfortable 21st century world, we face incredible obstacles. They might be internal barriers like shame, unbelief, and fear. Or they might be external hurdles like COVID restrictions, financial troubles, or worldly temptations. God calls us to persevere, to put our hope and faith in the person and work of Jesus. Despite the external religious rules of her day and the internal fatigue of her body, this woman sought Jesus with all that she had. She exemplified what it means to have faith that perseveres. Do you keep pursuing Jesus despite the obstacles that life and Satan place in your path? May the Lord strengthen and embolden us all with such faith!
Reflect and Respond:
How would the Lord call you to push past the obstacles in your life today? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
Let's face it, the Christian life is hard. Relationships take work. Christians forget. Sometimes it is tempting to go back to the days when God was not the center of our lives - to backslide. We are all faced with tremendous pressures to drift away from intimacy with Jesus and the community of the Church. However, the Lord invites us to pay attention, to move forward, to draw near, and to live lives of worship. Draw Near: Hebrews on Christian Worship is a Bible study on the Book of Hebrews intended to lead participants into a deeper intimacy with the Living God in the context of New Testament worship. Draw nearer to God in authentic worship today!
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