A large crowd followed and pressed around him. And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. 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. When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering. NIV
The woman with the issue of blood. Not much is known about her except that she had some sort of incurable hemorrhaging. For 12 years she went from one doctor to another trying one painful treatment after another in a vain search for a cure.
To compound matters, her condition also rendered her ceremonially unclean, an outcast under the Law (Leviticus 15:19; 25-27).
She was now broke, desperate, alone and in pain.
Then she heard about Jesus. Everyone was talking about Him, I suppose, and the amazing things He was saying about the love and compassion of God for even the most lowly of people. And then there were the amazing things He was doing through the power of God – the sick were being healed, the lame were walking again, blind eyes were being opened, lives were being touched and changed forever.
Well is it said that faith comes by hearing; hope and faith took root in her heart again.
When she found Him, He was almost impossible to get to. Everyone, it seemed, wanted to see Him, touch Him, get His attention. And she was ceremonially unclean; there was no telling how the crowd would react to her if they found out.
Under the circumstances, she simply did the best she could – she crept up quietly behind Him, reached through the press of the crowd and touched the edge of His garment. And the rest is history.
Faith does not depend upon formulas or prescribed ways to get things done. There is no right way or wrong way. God allows us to express our faith and reach out to Him in our own way as the circumstances permit. Faith is simply doing the best you can under difficult circumstances to let God know that you’re looking to Him, depending upon Him, believing in Him even when you are weary and ready to give up.
It’s not important whether it’s a cry, a touch or a prayer; it’s the heart of faith at the back of it all that God sees and responds to, as Jesus did that day when He deliberately chose to stop and acknowledge her for the faith that found expression in a simple touch. He would not let such a wonderful example of faith go unnoticed. “Your faith has healed you,” He said to her in the presence of all the people.
Fortitude, determination, perseverance and faith won’t go unnoticed by God. God is always pleased when people press in despite great difficulties to take hold of His promises.
I believe that the Holy Spirit ensured that her story was recorded in the Bible for our benefit to encourage us to press in, to press through to Jesus when we are faced with difficulties, with impossible situations.
It doesn’t matter if everyone else thinks there’s no hope or that God does not move that way anymore. You have heard the word of the Lord. You know the heart of Jesus. Don’t give up hope. Don’t you let the crowd keep you from Him. Crawl on your knees if you must. Break convention if you have to. Press in and keep pressing in till you break through to Jesus.
“He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him” (Hebrews 11:5-6 KJV).