This morning I overheard a conversation at Starbucks that was quite impactful. It was the story of a woman hitting her 29 years of sobriety. In short, she was broken and in a dark place almost three decades ago. Many people attempted to help her and some gave up trying, but eventually one act of love got her attention. As a result, she cleaned up, found Jesus and has used her story to impact others.
This got me thinking. Considering how dark things were for her three decades ago, and all the people who gave up trying… what if that last person had given up too. Then I thought of all the lost people who had been given up on that Jesus showed an act of love too. One in particular stands out, the woman who was bleeding for 12 years.
“And there was a woman who had had a discharge of blood for twelve years, and though she had spent all her living on physicians, she could not be healed by anyone.”
(Luke 8:43) After over a decade of exhausting all of her resources trying to find healing, every physician had given up. And based on how Jesus responded to her, it was also apparent that she was not only financially bankrupt at this point, but socially bankrupt as well.
Had she only needed the physical healing of the bleeding, this story would have ended with one verse, “She came up behind him and touched the fringe of his garment, and immediately her discharge of blood ceased.” (v 44) But Jesus knew the real healing that was needed was far beyond the physical.
“And Jesus said, “Who was it that touched me?” When all denied it, Peter said, “Master, the crowds surround you and are pressing in on you!” But Jesus said, “Someone touched me, for I perceive that power has gone out from me.” And when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling, and falling down before him declared in the presence of all the people why she had touched him, and how she had been immediately healed.”
Jesus was fully aware of her situation and this is exactly why he made such a public and visible case. He wanted all to know that she was healed… but more importantly, He wanted everyone to know what she meant to Him. “And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace.” (v 48) She was family.
Someone out there is hurting. Someone out there is in need of one final act of love. Someone out there needs to know they are a son or daughter of God. Go be their brother or sister in Christ. Go show them that love.
“By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”