“Take heart, daughter; your faith has made you well.”

-Matthew [9:22]



In the first century, standing on the side of a road, pressed in by a throng of on lookers a woman stood waiting. Waiting for what seemed like her final chance to be healed. For twelve long years she had been hemorrhaging. A disease that isolated her from her community and had forced her to live on the outskirts of society. For twelve years she had spent what little money she had on doctors, only to have her health continue to decline. Frightened by the decline in her health and scarred by the isolation of her disease, she desperately wanted to be healed. Faithfully she stood there waiting for “The One” to pass by, so she could touch his cloak and be healed.

Hidden in this story is the social isolation that occurred with her persistent bleeding. In the first century, she was considered “unclean.” As such, she was banned from communal activities and like the lepers of her time, forced to live away. Loneliness was a constant companion. Like most people she could adjust to her situation, but just beneath the surface of her forced normalcy, she desired human contact and affirmation of her existence. She was alone and declining in health.

“In spite of the crowd, she now stood alone, looking into the eyes of God.”

There He was close enough to touch.  As He passed by, she forced her way through the crowd and went up behind him and touched his cloak. Instantly she felt her disease had been cured. He turned around and looked for who had touched him. The crowd was thick and pressed in around Him, those with Him were confused and asked who had touched Him. She emerged trembling from the crowd and said it was her. There trembling in fear, she was standing face to face with “The One.” In spite of the crowd, she now stood alone, looking into the eyes of God.

Jesus then said to her, “Take heart, daughter; your faith has made you well.” For twelve long years she had tried everything possible to escape from her disease and isolation. In an instant, she bravely stepped through the crowd and found her answer. A step in her life forced by her desperation and faith that Jesus was her answer. The many nights of searching in her mind for a solution were now at an end. She was whole again. A simple brave act of reaching out to touch the cloak of God had changed the course of her life. A simple act of faith combined with her own bravery changed her forever.

“A simple act of prayer combined with our own efforts produces a solution of hope.”

How many times in our lives have we searched for an answer? We have run down all the corridors in our mind searching for a solution. We have tried everything and nothing we tried works. We become despondent, knowing that through all our earnest efforts we have not moved forward. When we finally relent and give into our faith and pray, we find our answer. A simple act of prayer combined with our own efforts produces a solution of hope. A simple act of faith that heals us. A simple act that becomes a very personal experience with God. An act of faith that not only heals us, but lets us know God is with us.

Blessings, until next time,
Bruce L. Hartman


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