By Pastor Shan Thumbran | Sunday, 30th July 2023
Introduction: A few months ago, I read something that deeply encouraged me, and I would like to share it with you.
An elephant and a dog became pregnant simultaneously. The dog gave birth to six puppies after three months. Six months later, it became pregnant again and gave birth to another dozen puppies. This pattern continued. In the eighteenth month, the dog approached the elephant, questioning why she was still pregnant. The elephant replied,’ What I am carrying is not a puppy but an elephant. I give birth only to one in two years. When my baby hits the ground, the earth feels it. What I carry draws attention.” The principle here is not to lose faith when others receive answers to their prayers, but instead to wait with anticipation for your own blessings.
Understanding God’s Omnipotence and Our Impatience.
Everything God does is instant because he exists outside time and is not bound by limitations. However, we, being created in His image and likeness, find waiting distressing because we were not made to wait. Before the fall, everything happened instantly, like instant popcorn.
What Do We Do when Waiting Upon God?
Let us consider the story of the Woman with the Issue of Blood, which has four aspects.
1. The duration of her suffering – 12 years (Mark 5:25)
2. Symbolism of her unnamed status
3. Her powerful encounter with Jesus and subsequent healing (Mark 5:27-28)
4. God using things He hates to accomplish His purposes
Duration of Suffering
Her situation was exacerbated by her unanswered prayer coupled with secrecy and suffering.
• She endured hardship alone. She did not have any family, friends, or community members to assist her.
• She grew up in a community that avoided discussing embarrassing topics and difficulties.
• Her suffering reminds me of how life evolved. We no longer converse in our homes, families, or churches. Specifically, they have shortcomings, weaknesses, and difficulties.
• When we seek help from a doctor or psychologist, what do we do? We talk freely!
We should communicate with God, because we can rely on Him to heal us.
• Jesus was deeply connected to the struggles and needs of both the crowds and each individual in the crowds. (Matthew 9:36).
• We should communicate with a trusted friend. They may not always have all the answers or resources, but their compassion and empathy can help relieve pressure (Ecclesiastic 6:16).
Symbolism of Her Unnamed Status
In the Gospels, the name of this women with the issue of blood is not mentioned. The reason for this may be that she was part of a large crowd that “followed Jesus”, and her story holds valuable lessons for us.
• The idea of “following” Jesus in a biblical context differs from our social media age. It is not like “Jesus checked in Jerusalem,” but rather a deep commitment to seek and learn from Him (Matthew 16:24-26).
• People travelled from town to town to follow Jesus. As they arrived in each town where Jesus was they would hear about Jesus’ teachings, healings, miracles, deliverance, and compassion from those who witnessed Jesus.
• The unnamed woman became part of the crowd through the process of following Jesus. She heard the testimonies of others and joined in the pursuit of encountering Jesus (Mark 5:27-28).
• Their testimonies were powerful, evoking a sense of faith and hope. Imagine the light in their eyes as they listen to stories of how Jesus healed and transformed lives.
• God wants us to remain in the presence of people with testimonies while waiting for answered prayer. Being surrounded by such testimonies can strengthen our faith and bring us closer to Jesus.
• Testimonies of God’s deliverance and transformation are like a blood transfusion of life into our veins. They infuse hope, encouragement, and resilience, even amid suffering, pain, and weariness. (Luke 24:32).
• The stories of “before” transformations remind us that everyone struggles and battles to face. Through the experiences of others, we can find hope and inspiration in our journeys.
• Seeking Jesus should be a continuous pursuit, even in times of pain and hardship. Just like those who seek Jesus for healing, we must persistently seek Him in our lives.
• Testimonies highlight the power and goodness of Jesus, drawing us closer to Him and His Word. When we hear how Jesus changed lives, it deepens our trust and reliance on His promises (Hebrews 10:24-25).
Her Powerful Encounter with Jesus
Before meeting Jesus, the woman’s life was filled with loneliness, frustration, weariness, and financial pressure. She had sought medical help but only grew worse. What are the lessons that her story encourages?
• Relying on God while seeking medical help is not wrong (Mark 5:25).
• Allow God’s Word as the final authority and not solely rely on human advice (Psalm 119:105).
• Sickness and disease are thieves of joy and money. (Mark 5:26).
• The unnamed women’s encounter with Jesus shows that it is not about the greatness of faith we have but where we direct the little faith we have (Matthew 17:20).
• The unnamed woman’s faith was simple and powerful. She touched Jesus’ hem, representing her faith in His Word and promises. We should follow her example and trust Jesus with unwavering faith.
• God draws us to the hem of the garment while we wait for our answered prayers (Mark 9:21).
• No matter our struggles or pain, Jesus always waits for us. We should not let anything stop us from drawing close to Him. (Mark 5:27-28)
• God’s Word brings transformation and healing. In challenging times, we should seek Jesus and trust in His promises, finding hope and comfort in His presence.
During times of waiting and suffering, finding strength in God’s Word and seeking Jesus with unwavering faith can bring about healing and transformation. Let us not lose hope or be envious of others but trust that our time is coming. Jesus is waiting for us with open arms, offering hope, comfort, and solace. Embracing His Word, we find faith, courage and strength. May we persevere in faith, knowing that God draws us to His Word, providing strength and comfort during waiting. (Mark 5:27-28)
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