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.
At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”
“You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’”
But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.” Mark 5:24–34
A poor woman had suffered severely for twelve years, during which time she had consulted many physicians. These doctors caused her even more suffering, despite the fact that she spent everything she had on the physicians. Fortunately, at some point the woman heard about Jesus and came to him. This suffering woman touched Jesus’ cloak. He immediately felt a power go forth from him and was surprised and asked, “Who touched my clothes, or me?” Jesus’ loving heart must have been moved; he wanted to reveal the faith shown by this simple act, the real faith of this woman. Jesus looked directly at her. Trembling with fear, she realized what had happened to her and came forward, falling at his feet. Suddenly, all shyness and reserve left her, and she told Jesus everything.
This incident shows how Jesus is one of us, really one of us – not someone we have to fear in awe of his divinity, but someone who out of love allows us to touch him. He does not stand above us, and yet in his infinite compassion he radiates his divine majesty and glory. Let us remember this. Our Savior is not far off.
The woman dared to touch Jesus’ cloak without his knowledge. How many others must also have benefitted from the power of Jesus in this way. How many more must have come to him weak, short of breath, half sick, with all kinds of minor complaints, and gone home strengthened, refreshed, and healthy. They received healing not because Jesus was aware of their need but simply because he was their brother. We, too, can find healing when we gather together in true love with Jesus in our midst.
“Your faith has healed you,” Jesus calls out to the woman. Yes, it was her faith. Look what faith can do, even in the lowliest! “Go in peace and be freed from your suffering,” Jesus told her. How happy, how joyful, how blessed did this woman return to her home!
Let us not forget that through our faith in Jesus (when this faith is part of a life lived in him) we can experience something of this power. How blessed, how joyful we could be if we would but reach out and touch him, who is our brother! If only we had more faith, even in simple things. Then the hand of the Lord would be shown far more often. Oh, that we would turn more readily to our dear Savior!
Johann Christoph Blumhardt