Just Reach Out

Mark 5:21-42. You know, that Bible story that I never heard as a little girl about the woman in the crowd who was sick. To be more specific, that story about the woman who was bleeding. For 12 years, my friends. {Thank you, Beth Moore, for being the first person I ever heard preach this passage truthfully.}

For 12 years, this woman had lived in what was probably a mixture of shame, pain, fear, confusion, frustration, and dashed hopes.

Her waiting place was healing. Do you think she was jumping for joy and bursting with smiles every day of those 12 years? I would guess there were moments when she wanted to do anything but that. I do plan to take a lot of liberties with this story, but my disclaimer is that despite the lack of details we have in this story, I believe God has laid on my heart a parallel for me in this waiting place I am in. I pray you can give me a little writing grace here.

So let's look a little closer at this woman's story which was so important that God decided to put it in His Holy Word.

Shame. I'm no Bible scholar or historian, but from what I've learned about Bible times is that if you had a sickness or ailment, the majority of people automatically assumed it was sin in your life or family that was causing it. What shame this woman must have experienced from 12 years of feeling that judgement. To the point that I feel like she probably hid herself away from people.

Have you ever experienced shame in your waiting? Maybe I don't have enough faith. Maybe I haven't done enough good things. Maybe it's sin in my life. Maybe I deserve this. Maybe some of those things are true, but I don't believe that is how God works. He gives mercy and grace without end. That's not to say there aren't consequences for our sins and life choices, but God did not create us to live in bondage. He created us to be set free through the blood of Jesus.

Fear. I bet she had some fear. Fear that God would never heal her. Fear that she would suffer from this bleeding for 12 more years. Fear that all she would ever know would be this waiting place.

Have you ever experienced fear in your waiting? Maybe God will keep me in this waiting forever. Maybe God has forgotten me. Maybe I am all alone. None of that is true. God knows every hair on our head. Do you think He could forget the name of His precious daughter much the less the heart of the sweet child of His of whom He knows the number of hairs on her head?

Confusion. I think confusion would have been a daily struggle for her. Can you imagine her confusion over God not healing her? Can you imagine her confusion over 12 long years of waiting? Confusion and just not understanding what God is doing.

Have you ever experienced confusion in your waiting? Why is this happening? When will this end? What did I do to deserve this? What on earth is God doing in my life? But that's a downward spiral of lies. God knows all and sees all. I'm gonna wear this verse out, but His ways and thoughts are so much higher than my ways and my thoughts. He is working things for the greater glory. 

Pain. Frustration. Hopelessness. Sadness.

Have you ever experienced those feelings in your waiting?

Yeah? Me too.

But here's the catch. The woman. She reached out. Past the shame. Past the fear. Past the pain. Past the confusion. Past the frustration. She reached out to touch Jesus. Laying all those feelings aside, she knew she had to touch Him.

We are not bound in those things. We have been set free. I have to claim that freedom here and now. There's no point in putting it off until the wait is over. I want to take hold of the freedom that Jesus has claimed for me today. Smack dab in the middle of my waiting place.

In my waiting, I am gonna take the risk. I am gonna risk exposing my shame, pain, fear, confusion, frustration. I am gonna reach out and touch Jesus. I know I can find healing there. Just reach out.


{This blog post is a part of a series called Redeeming the Waiting Place for the Write31Days challenge to write every day in October. You can find links to all posts in my series here. If you're interested, the Write31Days challenge is being taken by hundreds and hundreds of other wonderful bloggers which you can read more of right here. My personal favorite is browsing all the inspirational and Godly women who are blogging under the Inspiration & Faith tab which you can check out as well right here.}