Earlier this week, I read about this…woman. I never got her name, but I heard a pretty defining piece of her story. Apparently, she’d been ill & bent over for 18 years. She walked in the synagogue one day, and heard this man (known on the streets as Jesus) call her name. She walked over to Him (because dude was a pretty big deal), and He says “woman, you are loosed from your infirmity”, laid hands on her, and BAM, she’s just like new. I thought about it, and I realized that in a lot of ways, I’d been like that woman. I hadn’t been physically ill for decades, but…ok…let’s sit & break this down.
One of the most important parts of this woman’s amazing story is the fact that she had a problem. She had a problem that she couldn’t fix on her own. She had a problem that had a pretty solid grip on her for almost two decades. For eighteen years, she fought a losing battle. If she had kids, they probably accepted this as her identity by this point in her journey. Some may have only known her and defined her by her illness. Shoot, by this time, she’d probably accepted this as “the will of God” (which is where we typically toss things that don’t change by our deadlines - keeps us from as being mad at Him, right?). She probably made the decision to make the best out of a bad situation, and just…go to church anyway. She didn’t even ask Jesus to heal her, but she didn’t need to….all she needed was for Him to see her, and call her forward.
She may not have seen Jesus in the synagogue, but He definitely saw her. My God is pretty intentional, so I like to think that He looked for her on that day. I like to believe that He didn’t accidentally turn in her direction, but that He sought her out. I also wondered how many times this woman prayed to be healed…and seemingly got no response. How many days did she ask God for help…and felt like He had said “…nah…you’re good.”…only to find out that God hadn’t healed her earlier because He wanted to touch her Himself.
Then, He called her forward. This was literally all of the work she did, but….it’s work nonetheless. While he didn’t tell her to run around the synagogue three times, or to scream, fast, danced, etc. she had to come out of the crowd. She had to move out of who she was & towards who she would be. What if she’d been like some of us? What if she had been crippled by fear? Or if she’d been so numb to the thought of a new beginning (because after a while, it seems rather hopeless) that she just assumed that Jesus couldn’t have been talking to her? What if she’d adapted to her illness so well that the thought of being whole wasn’t appealing? Well, if she’d been like some of us, she would’ve stayed in something that should’ve been shattered.
When Jesus healed her, He specifically distinguished who she was from what she had been bound by. He laid His hands on her, and immediately pulled her out of a pit. The moment she was freed, she worshipped. The moment she was free, she celebrated her savior. The moment she was free, she gave glory where it was due. Her immediate reaction was worship. She didn’t care about who was around, or how mad they were, her eyes were on Jesus, and Jesus alone.
There are moments in this woman’s story that we can all identify with. What’s got you bent over? What has held you down so long that you’ve stopped fighting it? What is happening in your life that you can’t fix on your own? That problem has a purpose. Whatever the illness, whatever the condition, whatever the problem, I’m here to remind you that He does see you. Your tears are not lost in the wealth of prayers that hit His ear, nor are they lost in the amount of things that He sees. So often, when God doesn’t fix a situation when we want Him to, we think either doesn’t see, or doesn’t care, but our problems are His problems. When the enemy messes with us, he messes with God (and God is not one to mess with). I don’t care if it’s been 18 hours, 18 days, or 18 years - God sees you and He cares about your life. That’s why He’s calling you forward, but you have to be willing to come out of what was & walk into what will be (which isn’t always revealed). I’m sure the woman had issues once her healing was done. I’m sure she had people who continued to talk about how she used to be. Yet, nothing in her history changed her destiny, because she chose to walk forward. The same can be true for you.
Move forward. Don’t let fear stop you. Don’t let uncertainty cause you to reconsider. Move. Forward. God has already given you the grace to do it, and He’s ready to separate your purpose from your pain. It happened immediately for her, and it may happen immediately for you. If it doesn’t happen immediately, don’t get discouraged, pray for patience, and have faith that God is not one to call you out & not support and/or sustain you. Once your shift, your breakthrough, or your freedom comes, don’t forget to follow the path of this woman, and worship. Make the same place you cried the very place that you rejoice, and walk in that new freedom. Today, you…are….loosed.
Background music: Immediately - Tasha Cobbs
Words from the Author
At the end of the day, these posts are the thoughts that run through my mind. These are the lessons I've learned. The doors that I've walked through. The path I've chosen. This is part of what it means to be me. Hopefully, it'll help you be...you. Let's grow together, kay?
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