Hello My Name Is… (Week 8) – Bleeding Woman
Welcome to the week 8 summary post, as we look back on the thoughts and discoveries from this week about the Bleeding Woman. Firstly – huge thanks to Pippa our new Mummy Meditations Champion for holding the fort last week whilst I was away!! If you haven’t read her first ever summary post, do check it out!
So this was the verse we were meditating on together this week:
“Just then a woman who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak. She said to herself, “If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed.” Matthew 9:20-21
Why included? A hope to the hopeless…
The first thing that stood out to me this week was the length of time this woman had been suffering – 12 years. This is a considerable amount of time, although I’m sure if we think about it there are issues that we have probably been struggling with for the same, if not longer, periods of time. Maybe its not a physical issue, maybe its anxiety or a family problem, something that just won’t go away on its own. So when I came to question of “why was this woman included in the Bible?”, the answer came jumping out to me. She is a hope to the hopeless. She is there to show that there is hope that these long term issues can be healed, can be sorted, when we turn to our Saviour with them.
Lots of you also mentioned that her issues were probably menstrual related, which would have been something looked down upon in society at that time. Woman on their periods were required to be secluded away from others, and if this was something long term then that would have been a very lonely place to dwell in consistently. Here again there is hope to those who have been neglected and cast out by society. Nowadays it isn’t periods that separate us, but other things might.
Why not named? A voice to the voiceless…
In her first facebook live discussion, Pippa mentioned that this is quite an intimate verse. We are included in her thoughts and what she “says to herself”. It seems strange to know these intimate details, and yet still not know her name. But yet another community member suggested that she might have asked for her name not to be included due to the issue it related to. This makes a lot of sense to me as the story reads as though she has been interviewed by the disciples after the event has taken place. Noone would have noticed what was going on until the next verse (which we will look at next week!) when Jesus notices someone has touched his cloak, and so they would have had to go back and speak to her later. At this point it would be easy for her to explain the problem she did have but not disclose her name or want it spread that it was her.
In doing this she is protecting herself, but still allowing her story to be told, still giving a voice to the voiceless for generations to come. Would knowing her name have changed how we view this story? I’m not sure, but its an interesting question to ask!
In her shoes. Do we have the same faith?
As with Samson’s Mother last week, the big question I am left with is “Do I have the same faith as her?”. To step out and truly believe that just touching Jesus’ cloak will bring the healing that she so desperately wants and needs. Do I have that? Perhaps she wouldn’t have had that faith one year into her bleeding. Maybe not even 5 years into the bleeding. But at twelve years she is ready to take that step of faith and bet everything on Jesus. I don’t feel condemned by stepping into this woman’s shoes, but loved. I feel like she is the same as all of us, that maybe if we don’t have that faith yet, we will do soon.
What has God revealed to you this week?
We carry on looking at the bleeding woman and at the end of her story with Jesus, by meditating on this verse:
“Jesus turned and saw her. “Take heart, daughter,” he said, “your faith has healed you.” And the woman was healed at that moment.” Matthew 9:22
I think this will be a really interesting verse to meditate on, and I do hope you’ll all join me over in the Facebook Group for a live discussion at 9pm on Monday night to kick off the week! See you then. Rachel x