Hello My Name Is…. (Week 9) Bleeding Woman
Good Evening Mummy Meditators!! Apologies for the lateness of posting this, but I have been away having an amazing weekend helping to run a youth camp down in Northamptonshire. It has been lovely to look back through all the comments and thoughts on this week’s verse and how it has impacted and encouraged us all this week. Here’s a reminder of the 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
He SAW her
The first thing that we read in this verse was that, despite the huge crowds around him, the hustle and bustle of what was going on, Jesus SAW her. It was mentioned in the discussion this week that after last week’s verse, where we saw her muttering to herself about just touching his cloak, that she probably wanted to discretely do that and then slip away unnoticed. Her ailment was not an accepted one, she was used to loneliness and being ignored. And yet here, Jesus doesn’t just let her slip away but makes sure she is noticed. He sees her because he loves her and knows what is going on in her heart, and he sees us too. Doesn’t that fill you with comfort to know that we are not forgotten or ignored by God, but seen?
He KNEW her
Not only does Jesus see this woman, but he also speaks out to her to tell her something very very important. His first words – take heart, daughter – seem a little bit throw away. But to someone who may have been outcast by her family and community because of her bleeding, to be called daughter would have been a huge deal. Just as in the story of the man on the mat who was lowered through the roof, where Jesus forgives his sins first as that was a bigger deal to him than the physical problem, maybe Jesus sees through the need and sees that actually her emotional healing is much more important than the physical one here too. To be called daughter, and all the healing that would have brought to her weary soul would have been immense. God is more concerned with our hearts than with our bodies.
He HEALED her
Jesus doesn’t just stop with the emotional healing of this woman, but continues to say that her faith had healed her. It doesn’t say that the touch of his cloak was magical or anything like that, but that it was her faith that healed her. As I tried to step into her shoes this week I struggled to know or understand what that relief must have been like to know the 12 years of suffering was over. To feel that weight lifted off her shoulders. I know for many of us there are perhaps burdens of all kinds we have carried for that amount of time or longer so perhaps you can relate.
Why was she included but not named?
Interestingly, we have all come to the conclusion that she might not have been named by choice. It seems clear that she spoke with some of the disciples or others afterwards, so that they were able to gather the whole story for the gospel account, but she doesn’t give them her name, maybe to protect from loneliness and rejection in the future. She was a remarkable woman though, and I for one am so glad that her story is included. It shows Jesus heart for the those who have suffered a long time, and specifically for women’s problems that weren’t highlighted as much. It shows that being accepted as a daughter is just as important as the physical healing her provided, an important lesson for all of us.
In our final week of this mini-series we are looking at the character of Jairus’ Daughter and stepping in to her shoes by meditating on this verse:
“Immediately the girl stood up and began to walk around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished.” Mark 5:42
I do hope you can all join me at 9pm Monday night for the last Facebook live of the series, and there will be an exciting announcement of something to commemorate the end of this series! See you then…..