“A woman who had a hemorrhage for twelve years, and had endured much at the hands of many physcians, and had spent all that she had and was not helped at all, but rather had grown worse—after hearing about Jesus, she came up in the crowd behind Him and touched His cloak. For she thought, ‘If I just touch His garments, I will get well.’ Immediately the flow of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of her affliction.” Mark 5:25-29 NASB
Everyone’s got a sickness
We’re looking for a cure
Bought so many treatments
The doctors made us poor
It seems both good and bad news
When you finally see
The only one to heal us
Only works for free.
Twelve years of constant bleeding. Can you even imagine? I certainly can’t — but maybe that’s because I’m a man. For twelve years this woman carried a secret bleed, a secret burden, a secret ache—a secret shame. For four-thousand, three hundred and eighty miserable days she secretly bled—both body and soul.
The thoughts in her mind. Would she ever walk, stand, sit, sleep right again? Would she ever again have light shoulders — a heart so free from her own burdens it could easily carry those of others? Would she ever be free?
Most of us who know ourselves know that we have been this woman (men too). Limping through life—longing for sweet freedom from ‘that durable, horrible burden.' A besetting sin. A crippling fear. An ache of loneliness — an unfulfilled longing for intimacy. A broken heart. Oh, the things we carry — the shame that haunts us in the night.
Just like this woman, we try to medicate our bleeding with many different things. The lonely seek relationships and sex — or, if those are unavailable, porn. The guilty seek moralism or fleshly religion — some fancy suit to cover the skeletons in their closet. The unsatisfied seek entertainment, money, food, and every other pleasure the Earth offers. Just like this woman, we spend all we have looking for a cure. But just like this woman, all of our supposed miracle cures only break us further beyond repair.
What was it like for that woman to realize that every expensive medical procedure only worsened the flow of blood? What was it like to realize that she had spent her entire inheritance and savings on her own (well-meaning) demise? The Bible doesn’t say, but go ahead — ask yourself. Ask me. Ask every man — cause every man at some time spends all his bread on some flimsy miracle cure to chase away his shameful inner illness.
And yet, what was it like for that woman to realize that a miracle cure really existed — not a surgery, nor a medical concoction, nor a physician — but a Savior? One touch of Jesus Christ the Divine and she received healing that twelve years of doctors could not provide.
Maybe what we need is not more books, bikes, sermons, sex, friends, food, preachers, porn, TV shows or televangelists. Maybe what we need is Christ.
He alone can heal the wound. And He alone does it for free.
“Ho! Every one who thirsts, come to the waters;
And you who have no money come, buy and eat.
Come, buy wine and milk
Without money and without cost.
Why do you spend money for what is not bread,
And your wages for what does not satisfy?
Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good,
And delight yourself in abundance.”
Isaiah 55:1-2 NASB