Good Morning Gorgeous,
It’s a brand new day. A fresh start. A new day to seek Jesus in a fresh new, way. A new opportunity to push through all obstacles with a desperation for Jesus. When we seek Him with faith and belief that He is The Answer to all that we are needing, we will experience the healing we need. We will also experience something else in addition to our healing, we will receive identity. God given identity that the world cannot touch, cannot deny, and cannot take away from us. I read a chapter from Christine Caine’s book Unashamed and her fresh insight into the story of the the bleeding woman that Jesus healed made my jaw drop. I was and still am blown away by this new revelation of this story.
This story appears in Matthew, Mark, and Luke.. there was a woman who had been sick for 12 years. She was continually bleeding with no relief. She had given everything she had to doctors, and they not only were unable to heal her, but the bible also says that she had suffered a great deal from many doctors. I can only imagine what some of the painful remedies may have been given to her…
In this culture with no running water, no electricity, no disposable sanitary items, etc. , this was a horrendous affliction. It brought daily struggle. In addition to the sanitary problems this illness brought upon her, there were religious laws that kept her in seclusion. She was unable to be touched by anyone or go out in public while she was bleeding.. This was a difficult culture for women in general, but to add the shame of perpetual uncleanness would have meant that she had lived 12 years secluded, isolated, alone, and ashamed. She heard about Jesus and the miraculous healings. Yet, she wasn’t allowed to leave the house. She wasn’t permitted to touch others or be touched. She certainly couldn’t go out into public into a large crowd.However, 12 years of the illness, exhausting all other avenues of healing by doctors had left her desperate. Somehow she knew Jesus was going to be her answer. She had the faith that casts mountains right into the sea. So begins her healing journey. The bible states that she thought to herself, “If I can just touch his robe, I will be healed”
Wow, the FAITH! And the boldness. She was chasing after her miracle. She wasn’t allowed to touch him in her unclean state. Yet, the story is so so much more!
In Matthew and Mark, it states that she touched the fringe of his robe.
This is significant because the fringe of a man’s robe was called the tzitzit and it was a part of their robe that was only to be touched by their close family members like a daughter or a son. So even without the uncleanness of her condition, she was not allowed to touch that part of Jesus’s robe! Yet, in a large crowd with people pressing in, maybe that was all she could touch. The tzitzit were like tassles that were on each corner of the robe. Maybe that was the only piece she could get to. I am not sure why she touched that part of His garment, but it is significant because of what He did next. The bleeding woman walking about among the people when she was banned to isolation…. scandalous! Touching a part of his robe reserved for only those closest to him, only those who had an identity that allowed that type of intimacy…. scandalous again! Jesus, being God incarnate knew this of course! He had the answer to everything that would have condemned her for her actions.
First of all, as soon as she touched his garment, she immediately knew she was healed and her bleeding stopped. Jesus immediately knew He had been touched as well. He felt the healing power leave Him. He stopped in the crowd and asked, “Who touched me?” Knowing she was not supposed to be out amongst the people, knowing she had just touched a personal part of His clothing, she may have wanted to flee. She may have wanted to hide. But she had been in hiding for 12 long years. She has momentarily experienced radical healing. I think she longed for more.. I think her heart was racing, but her desire to come face to face with Jesus was greater than her fears. She stepped forward! She confessed everything! She told Him that she had been bleeding. This alone may have made the crowd gasp and back away! Then, she admitted to touching his robe. It was getting worse and worse for her. But….Jesus in His endless grace and His love for her. Jesus knew exactly how to redeem her. He looked at her and He said something astonishing. Something I usually breeze over when I read this story
…. He called her “Daughter!” In all three books Matthew, Mark, and Luke, he stops and begins with..”Daughter….” He is making a way for her to have touched His robe. He is giving her an identity that gives her the RIGHT to touch Him so personally.
And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace. Your suffering is over..”
Jesus made her His own daughter before the crowd, healed her, filled her with peace, and confirmed her experience with “Your suffering is over!”
The crowd couldn’t shame her any longer. She was made well by Jesus. They couldn’t accuse her of stepping out of bounds within her cultural rights because Jesus elevated her to the status of His daughter, so that she had the right to touch Him. He then made sure she knew she was healed once and for all when he said, “Go in peace. Your suffering is over.”
Gorgeous Girl, this means that what you’ve been struggling with for years can all be healed if you can just push through everything standing between you and Jesus. If you can desperately drive away all that is distracting you, and seek to just touch the hem of His garment, He is waiting to call you, “Daughter.” He desires to heal us completely, and to also give us an identity that leaves the world or the “crowd” unable to charge us with any crime. When Jesus names you, no one can take that away. You leave His presence forever changed. You can have peace and your suffering will be no more.
Let’s push through for the kind of faith that the bleeding woman had to go after Jesus. I want to seek Jesus like that. Boldly. Desperately. Filled with assurance that if I can just barely touch Him. I will be healed.
Dear Heavenly Father, Thank you for your Precious Word that we can read and be filled with faith to keep pressing through the crowds to reach You. Lord, we continue to pray for more faith, more boldness, and more strength to keep moving toward You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.