Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of November 25, 2007
- Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of November 25, 2007
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As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho
Press, here is a selection from our book of daily
devotions, "Living as the Beloved: One Day at a
Time," by the Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.
Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
meditation. We hope you will be blessed.
Thank you for forwarding this to your friends.
Jesus stopped for one person
"Immediately her hemorrhage stopped; and she felt
in her body that she was healed of her disease.
Immediately aware that power had gone forth from
him, Jesus turned about in the crowd and said,
'Who touched my clothes?' And his disciples said
to him, 'You see the crowd pressing in on you; how
can you say, "Who touched me?"' He looked all round
to see who had done it. But the woman, knowing what
had happened to her, came in fear and trembling, fell
down before him, and told him the whole truth. He
said to her, 'Daughter, your faith has made you well;
go in peace, and be healed of your disease.'"
Mark 5:29-34 (NRSV)
Even as the eager crowd pressed about him, Jesus felt
his remarkable power reach out and heal someone. He
stopped in his tracks while the excited crowd
breathlessly awaited his words. Slowly surveying
the crowd, Jesus asked them, "who touched my clothes?"
His baffled inner circle of disciples were impatient
at what they felt was a needless delay. Time was of
the essence. "But Jesus," they probably responded,
"with this enormous crowd, many people have been
pressing against you. Perhaps we should hurry, for
the sick little girl is near death and awaiting your
In fear and trembling, the formerly ill and desperate
woman came forward. It was obvious to her that Jesus
would not move on until she identified herself.
Although it was considered highly improper for a
Jewish woman to speak publicly to a man not her
husband, she mustered every ounce of courage, and
reluctantly came forward. While all eyes were
riveted on her, she quietly shared the whole truth
of her illness and suffering to Jesus and the gaping
crowd. For a moment, time seemed to stand still as
the pathos of her life touched their hearts.
Jesus listened intently. He then kindly and publicly
blessed her act of faith and restored the tremulous
woman back into meaningful community. "Daughter,"
said Jesus, "your faith has healed you. Go in peace
and be freed from your suffering." By saying this,
he spoke with an authority his listeners and critics
alike would honor.
Jesus respected the desperate woman's courage and
gladly affirmed her healing, thus restoring her
status as a religiously clean and healthy person
to her local religious and social community. Her
neighbors, friends, and family would no longer fear
being near her. The healed woman could now entertain,
experience meaningful touch by the people who loved
her, and attend public functions in town and her
synagogue. She was an outcast no longer. Jesus
healed much more than her physical illness. He
had healed the deepest needs of her soul.
What can we take from this story and apply to our
own lives? There are many lessons here. Perhaps
the most important is that when one person reaches
out to Jesus, he stops and compassionately listens.
As he healed the deepest needs of this sick woman's
soul, so he can heal our hurts and loneliness.
Jesus continues even to this day, to bring isolated
people into affirming community and deeper relationship
with God. But first we must reach out in faith.
Heal us, O Christ, as you have healed the deepest
needs of this sick woman. May we too, experience
healing faith and your peace, and experience freedom
from our human sufferings. Amen.
Grace and peace,
Chi Rho Press
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