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Erica Galindo
Celebrating Food, Faith and Family
Last edited on: August 29, 2015.

What do you do when you’re at the end of yourself? At the end of your rope? When you’re lying in bed at 2 a.m., tossing and turning, frantic, panicked, desperate?

In Mark 5:21-34, we read about a bleeding woman. She’s been hemorrhaging for 12 years! Going to doctor after doctor, spending all her money, and not getting better. For 12 years! 

So, being at the end of her tether, this unclean woman jostles and pushes her way through a crowd to get to the One she’s heard can heal her. Unthinkable!

Unthinkable because women in those days were considered unclean the week every month they have their period. This woman . . . 624 consecutive weeks. Unclean.

Pretty serious business, being unclean.

One commentator said, “She is walking pollution.”

But as Jesus goes along preaching and healing, He’s making the case that nothing is impossible for Him. No one is beyond His reach of grace and love and healing, not even a bleeding, unclean woman.

But He’s on His way to heal a dying little girl whose father is a very important man! Can’t the bleeding woman wait? Doesn’t the little girl need Him more?

We think a dying girl is more important than a bleeding woman;

We think a religious official, a pastor, Billy Graham, the rich are more important than our middle class, struggling families, and our not life-threatening, ongoing issues;

We think there is a finite amount of space in the Kingdom waiting room, so why bother the Healer with something a few more Advil and some maxi pads can manage.

But one of the great mysteries of faith is . . . God cares equally about what is going on with me and my family, as well as with you and your family, and the rest of the 7 billion people on the earth.

He knows and He cares and He will stop and pay attention to you and whatever it is that has you at the end of your tether.

The bleeding woman’s shame, embarrassment and guilt forces her to approach Jesus from behind and below hoping that no one, especially Jesus, will notice.

She knows what the law says about her “issue.” She’s clear about that; any Jew would be. She knows that people point at her, shout at her to stay away. She hears them call her, “walking pollution.” But she’s desperate, and in her desperation she plunges through the crowd to Jesus.

She stretches out her hand and touches the hem of His cloak. And she’s healed! Instantly! After 12 years, after 624 weeks, after 4,368 days, the bleeding stops. It. just. stops.

But Jesus felt power leave His body and immediately turns around and asks, “Who touched my clothes?”

(No one goes unnoticed by Jesus.)

After listening to her tell Him EVERYTHING, the first thing Jesus says to her, the very first word He speaks to this cowering woman is . . .


Daughter. How long has it been since she’s felt like a daughter? We don’t know anything about her family, but Jesus uses the one word she probably hasn’t heard for 12 years . . . Daughter. The one word He knows she most needs to hear . . . Daughter. Her 12 years of suffering hasn’t only been physical.

“Daughter, Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”

How are you suffering? Are you at the end of your tether — physically, emotionally, relationally?

Then come . . .

Come secretly, come publicly. Come with your head lifted up or bowed down, on your face or on your knees. You’ll have to lay down your pride and your worries about what other people think, but come.

You aren’t taking up space in God’s waiting room because your problems, issues, or anxieties are not serious or life-threatening. Whatever it is that troubles you, brings you grief or despair matters to God.

Are you willing to push through the crowd and stretch out your hand?

Do you need freedom and peace?

There is One who is waiting to give you what you need. Exactly what you need.

 “Daughter, go in peace, shalom, and be freed from your suffering.”

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