Raw and Real
A hundred times I have tried to write this update.
If you have been following our progress on the farm, you know that we just finished our farm house. It was quite the project, in the middle of the pandemic with the added stress of hurricane landfalls that affected the supply chains all across the United States. When we finally received our windows, it was a whirlwind of crews onsite each day. We waited anxiously for our turn to take over and complete the interior of our little dream home.
Most people don’t know, but just as we working in the final weeks, I began having some serious medical problems. I am nearing the age of menopause, so at first I was not concerned at all. The Lord kept speaking to me throughout this time, reminding me of the woman with the issue of blood. Its such a well known miracle.
To understand the context, we need to go back in time to the Old Testament. In Leviticus, we can read about all the rules for being “clean” or without sin. There were steps you had to take in certain situations. These were the laws and they were followed strictly for generations. Here is what it says:
Leviticus 15:25“ ‘When a woman has a discharge of blood for many days at a time other than her monthly period or has a discharge that continues beyond her period, she will be unclean as long as she has the discharge, just as in the days of her period. 26 Any bed she lies on while her discharge continues will be unclean, as is her bed during her monthly period, and anything she sits on will be unclean, as during her period. 27 Anyone who touches them will be unclean; they must wash their clothes and bathe with water, and they will be unclean till evening. 28 “ ‘When she is cleansed from her discharge, she must count off seven days, and after that she will be ceremonially clean. 29 On the eighth day she must take two doves or two young pigeons and bring them to the priest at the entrance to the tent of meeting. 30 The priest is to sacrifice one for a sin offering and the other for a burnt offering. In this way he will make atonement for her before the Lord for the uncleanness of her discharge. 31 “ ‘You must keep the Israelites separate from things that make them unclean, so they will not die in their uncleanness for defiling my dwelling place, which is among them.’ ”
So back to the New Testament when we read about the woman in Mark 5, we know that she has had an issue of blood. She has been bleeding for 12 years. For 12 years, she had been suffering physically. She had spent everything she had in search of a cure. But so much more than that, she had been suffering emotionally. See, according to the Old Laws, she was unclean. No one was allowed to touch her or even touch anything that she had touched. It saddened me so much when I realized this.
How incredibly lonely she must have been.
She must have ached for a hug.
Just to reach out and touch someone.
So when we read in Mark 5, we know that she was truly desperate to go into the crowd and attempt to touch the hem of Jesus’ cloak.
Mark 5:24 A large crowd followed and pressed around him. 25 And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. 26 She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse. 27 When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, 28 because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” 29 Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering. 30 At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”31 “You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’” 32 But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. 33 Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. 34 He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”
What a moment that must have been for her! See, Jesus didn’t rebuke her for touching him when she was unclean. There, in the crowd of people, HE said “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”
For seven long weeks I had irregular bleeding. Some days I couldn’t even go anywhere, it was so bad. At one point, my doctor ordered an ultrasound and based on those results we scheduled a biopsy to see if it was cancer.
It was scary.
It was raw.
It was real.
And lets face it, it was embarrassing. How do you even ask people to pray for you when the issue is blood? So I felt alone. And yet, day after day, the Lord reminded me of the woman with the issue of blood. I read the scripture over and over. It wrecked me. I realized that there must be so many who feel alone. Who feel “unclean”, “unworthy”, or “unloved”. And it wrecked me for women everywhere.
In Hebrews 9 we read again about the Laws of Moses and the New Covenant with Jesus:
1Hebrews 9:9 When Moses had proclaimed every command of the law to all the people, he took the blood of calves, together with water, scarlet wool and branches of hyssop, and sprinkled the scroll and all the people. 20He said, “This is the blood of the covenant, which God has commanded you to keep.” 21 In the same way, he sprinkled with the blood both the tabernacle and everything used in its ceremonies. 22 In fact, the law requires that nearly everything be cleansed with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.23 It was necessary, then, for the copies of the heavenly things to be purified with these sacrifices, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. 24 For Christ did not enter a sanctuary made with human hands that was only a copy of the true one; he entered heaven itself, now to appear for us in God’s presence. 25 Nor did he enter heaven to offer himself again and again, the way the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood that is not his own. 26 Otherwise Christ would have had to suffer many times since the creation of the world. But he has appeared once for all at the culmination of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself. 27 Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, 28 so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.
Although I was wrecked by the revelations I discovered in my study, I was overjoyed at the outcome for this precious woman with the issue of blood. She was healed and she was publicly validated. Jesus could have just let her be healed but he made her speak up in the crowd. He made her admit that she was the one who had touched him. I’m sure everyone knew of her. To not touch her because she was “unclean”. But he validated her right there in the crowd. He redeemed her!
Her miracle was not just the physical suffering but it was so much more than that!
Let that soak in. Jesus cares about your physical suffering. He cares about your financial suffering. He cares about your emotional suffering. He cares about it all. He paid the price to redeem all of it, if only you will ask him.
Test Results and Answered Prayers
On Monday morning, I went to our homeschool co-op and taught my 8th grade class. I left at lunch to go have the biopsy. Before I left, some of my dearest friends prayed with me for a miracle. The procedure went well. The doctor gave me a prescription to help alleviate the bleeding, because I had to go to the ER it had gotten so bad and they were concerned that my blood count was getting too low. I never had to take that medicine. My results came back negative. Praise the Lord for no cancer! And the day the results came back the bleeding completely stopped. All the pain was gone. All of the issues were healed!
I’m not sure why we suffer. What I do know is that it is in those moments we see God, we get to know HIM for who HE is.
He truly is all we need.
Oh dear friend, my prayer for you is that you would have an encounter with the Lord. One that will change you and redeem you. One that will heal you and restore you. Whatever it is you are suffering from, I pray that the Lord himself will meet you where you are right now. I pray that your eyes will see a thousand little miracles- they are everywhere if only you will look for them.
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