January 13, 2021

A Touching Power

Mark 5:24-34

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

—  Mark 5:34

Many of us have difficult personal situations and histories that we cannot escape or change. And we would really like it to be otherwise.

Somehow this woman, who was, in effect, dying for 12 years in her helpless condition, trusted that if she just touched Jesus’ clothes, she would be made well. Sure enough, she did—and she was healed.

But then it seems she became worried. “Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it.” Maybe she worried that Jesus would scold her for taking his power without asking, or that she would be in trouble for touching his cloak because she was “unclean,” or even that Jesus might take back her healing since she didn’t get permission.

She came forward, though, and told Jesus “the whole truth.” And instead of fulfilling any of her fears, he addressed her personally as “Daughter” and reassured her with holy compassion and a word of peace.

Notice again that contamination and defilement did not flow to Jesus, making him unclean; ­rather, power and healing flowed from Jesus to the woman, making her whole and clean.

Though we tend to think that disease, death, and destruction have the upper hand, it’s good to remember that Jesus has come to reverse that notion. He has authority and power over the realities of our lives that we cannot change.

Thank you, Jesus, for the healing that you bring to our lives. I cannot fix or heal myself, but I am learning that you have the power to bring life. Amen.

About the author — Douglas MacLeod

Rev. Douglas MacLeod is a church pastor in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He has served as a pastor for over 36 years with five congregations in Michigan and Iowa. He and Cathy, his wife of 40+ years, are grateful for their three children and four grandchildren.

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