Darrel and Gail Voth

Directors of Mobilization, Beautiful Feet Missionary Training and Sending, Choctaw, Oklahoma

Risking to be clean

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Jesus had just left the Gerasenes after healing (giving his life back) the demoniac man and killing a herd of pigs, after which, “he was asked to leave.” After the chaos, Jesus has the long ride back across the lake to settle. He enjoys these rides, the creaking rock of the boat, the cool breeze in contrast to the hot sun, the birds and clouds overhead, the slap of the waves, he often dozes off…

They arrive at the dock, just down the shore from the fishers’ landing. And they’re spotted. Someone recognizes the group of disciples and their teacher.

“They’ve become good at picking us out.” Jesus chuckles to himself.

A crowd has already begun to form, but it soon parts as a high-profile, honored man is allowed through. Exuding urgency, Jairus, a leader in the local synagogue, explains the dire health of his daughter and Jesus is moved. He feels this man’s desperation and immediately connects with this young girl’s intrinsic value.

“We’re going with him.” Jesus curtly invites his friends.

Jairus leads the way—the crowd allows it—and Peter blazes the way through for Jesus (they didn’t, however, allow Jesus space)… they’re asking questions, offering a morsel of bread… Jesus feels each soul pressing into him as he struggles forward on his mission. He sees each one.

The woman also saw Jesus…

“If I could just touch his cloak, I’ll be healed.”

Twelve years and nothing has worked. She’s painfully aware of her own presence—hopefully no one else is—every person she’s touched is now unclean, just like herself. She feels so thoroughly dirty. But her desire to be restored is greater. Hope, inspired by the sight of Jesus of Nazareth (right in front of her now), causes her to reach forward between two others and grasp his cloak, just for a second. She stops. She doubles over with a severe, solid cramp… then… release. Not just the break between pains, but it’s over. She knows it to be true. Her face shows it.

Her face shows it! “Oh, no! They can tell… people are looking at me… Jesus is stopped—he knows! I’m in trouble…” Panic overtakes her joy… she has to come clean with what she’s done… Clean. “I’m clean. I can go to the temple and atone for my impropriety…”

She falls at his mercy. There’s nothing to lose—she’s accustomed to loss. Jesus is briefly confused, then his eyes meet hers.

He’s smiling…

Mark 5:22-34


Author: darrelvoth

Just a boy with some bread and a few fish waiting to see what Jesus is going to do next.

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