Today’s blog is based on the story of two people Jesus healed. Before you read on, you may want to stop by Mark 5:21-43 and read it.
I plan to spend a chunk of eternity meeting some of these characters we read about in the Bible. And the very first thing I want to ask most of them is, “What’s your name?” In so many cases, we know these people only by their circumstances. In this story we meet two females. Neither has a name, but over the years they’ve come to be known by their labels: Jairus’s Daughter and the Hemorrhaging Woman (now there’s a label to aspire to).
Jairus’s daughter is the first one we meet, because of her father. He’s a synagogue official, a man of influence who’s desperate to save his daughter. He searches for Jesus, pushing through the crowd, humbling himself before this Messiah because he knows this man is his last hope for his daughter’s life. “Lay your hands on her, that she may get well and live,” was his plea.
What a wonderful blessing to have a father like that. Every little girl deserves to have a loving father who will fight for her. Deep inside of us, we all long for this because that’s God’s desire for us too.
This father knows the clock is ticking for his daughter. Her life is slipping away and, with it, all his joy & delight.
But . . . in the middle of this father’s passionate dilemma, the Savior is distracted. Someone has touched Jesus in the crowd, and He wants to know who it was. As if He doesn’t know? Of course He knows! Jesus wants the woman to know that He knows.
Because. . .
Though the little girl enjoys all the blessings of a father’s love, the hemorrhaging woman knows the shameful curse of rejection.
- She was an outcast. Twelve years with an issue of blood meant twelve years of being unclean and cut off from worshipping in the synagogue.
- She was alone. Mark tells us in chapter 5, “she had endured much at the hands of many physicians and had spent all that she had and was not helped at all, but rather had grown worse.”
- She was hiding. She “came up in the crowd behind Him, and touched His cloak.”
No one has fought for her.
No one is passionate that she be healed . . .
Make no mistake, these two stories are not placed together by chance. This is no coincidence, no accidental meeting in a crowd, and Jesus takes special care to prove that to us. Notice the words and phrases that intersect in this passage:
- Jairus wanted Jesus’s touch for his daughter, and now Jesus feels someone touch Him.
- A synagogue official and his agenda collide with a synagogue outcast and God’s plan.
- Twelve years of a young girl’s life meet with twelve years of suffering by an unnamed woman.
- Just like the father searched the crowd for Jesus, now Jesus searches the crowd for this mystery woman.
Jesus has a message for this suffering woman. “Daughter,” he calls her. And in that one word we know that the beloved child of this story is NOT the daughter of Jairus, but the Daughter of God.
Throughout her dark and lonely twelve years of suffering, she has trusted her heavenly Father. Now, God—her Father—pushes through the crowd of humanity on the feet of His Son, Jesus.
God halted the plans of men that day to save His daughter. She was the reason Jesus walked among them.
Jesus has a message for the rest of us too—“your faith has made you well.” Not the faith of others—even the most religious father on earth cannot produce a saving faith in his child. It’s by personal faith in our heavenly Father that we are made well.
My story looks a lot more like the woman’s—shamed by rejection, alone and hiding. But it’s those difficult circumstances of life that God used to draw me to Himself. Over many years, looking for answers to many questions, I too decided to reach out to Jesus. He responded to my weak faith by searching for me, drawing me out of hiding and giving me a name—“Daughter.”
But He didn’t stop there. He’s given me the same charge that He gave to that woman in the crowd . . . “go in peace and be healed.”
What’s your name?
Are you the unnamed daughter of someone else OR are you God’s Daughter?
Are you labeled by your circumstances OR have you been called out of the crowd?
God is the One who will fight for you. He has sent His Son to find you in the midst of the crowd with a word of truth—You are Loved, You have been Faithful, We are at Peace.
Are you at peace with God today? If not, ask your heavenly Father to speak to your heart.