Monday, July 21, 2014

Day 192, July 21

Do you remember the Biblical story of the woman with the "issue of blood?"  In ancient Israel, an "issue of blood" was considered unclean.  The woman suffered from this disease for twelve years.  For twelve years, she is considered unclean.  Worse, according to Jewish tradition, she is not only impure to herself, she also contaminates others, even those who just happen to pass by her.

Her isolation must have been terrible.  Here she is suffering, and then others fear to come near her.  Somehow, she has a bit of money, but, at the end of twelve years, her funds have run out.  As have her options.

Except one.  She has faith.

Through the Israelite "grapevine," she hears stories of Jesus and His ministry.  News of His miracles has spread through the community, and she knows that if she can touch his garments, she will be healed.  In Matthew, we learn that she "said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole."  She manages to do this.

Jesus stops and insists He's felt power leave Him, power that heals.  "I perceive that virtue is gone out of me."  (Luke 8:46).  The word virtue comes from a Greek term meaning "force, power, abundance, or strength."

Instantly, the woman's issue of blood is "dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of that plague."  (Mark 5:29)

We will finish this story tomorrow.

Joy for today:  knowing that healing power exists through faith.

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