Sunday, July 1, 2018

Little Girl, Get Up

 When Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a great crowd gathered round him; and he was by the lake. Then one of the leaders of the synagogue named Jairus came and, when he saw him, fell at his feet and begged him repeatedly, ‘My little daughter is at the point of death. Come and lay your hands on her, so that she may be made well, and live.’ So he went with him.
And a large crowd followed him and pressed in on him. Now there was a woman who had been suffering from haemorrhages for twelve years. She had endured much under many physicians, and had spent all that she had; and she was no better, but rather grew worse. She had heard about Jesus, and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, for she said, ‘If I but touch his clothes, I will be made well.’ Immediately her haemorrhage 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.’
 While he was still speaking, some people came from the leader’s house to say, ‘Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the teacher any further?’ But overhearing what they said, Jesus said to the leader of the synagogue, ‘Do not fear, only believe.’ He allowed no one to follow him except Peter, James, and John, the brother of James. When they came to the house of the leader of the synagogue, he saw a commotion, people weeping and wailing loudly. When he had entered, he said to them, ‘Why do you make a commotion and weep? The child is not dead but sleeping.’ And they laughed at him. Then he put them all outside, and took the child’s father and mother and those who were with him, and went in where the child was. He took her by the hand and said to her, ‘Talitha cum’, which means, ‘Little girl, get up!’ And immediately the girl got up and began to walk about (she was twelve years of age). At this they were overcome with amazement. He strictly ordered them that no one should know this, and told them to give her something to eat. Mark 5: 21-43

As a mother of three daughters I can tell you how troubled I was when they were sick. I would take their place in a minute if I could and bear their pain if it was possible. None of them has been quite near death, but near enough for me to remember the tears and prayers in the darkest of nights. They are all healthy and thriving now, as they have been most of their lives. And by healthy, I mean they are strong women who now as when they are children, love their sleep. Hard to get them up when they didn't want to rise. And sometimes, when they refused to rise, I would sit and watch them, perfect in every way, a holy gift I could never deserve. Then they woke up!

Jesus is on his way to heal a child when his cloak is grabbed by a woman. He goes on to heal a child that has been pronounced dead. These are wonderful stories in themselves. Yet there is a deeper reality that we might not see from our present place and time. There are females who need his help and one is a foreigner, possibly a refugee. They are both the least deserving, least valuable people in his society. They might even be counted less important than livestock. Yet it is to them he goes, to the least. He heals a girl child, a woman and calls them both as his daughters, his family. God is calling to us, as loud as possible today, to see the least, the outcast as beloved of God and members of our immediate families.

Today I ask God to help me remember that all are my family, all are my brothers and sisters. May we all remember that God's intention, God's desire is to bring love, healing and home to all the people of this earth and sks us to be the hands and heart of the Divine.

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