Archive for the ‘The Healing Touch’ Category

Risky Business

March 31, 2012

What do the following have in common?

Reaching out in a crowd to touch a rabbi’s robe, even though it will make him ceremonially unclean.

Waltzing into a house full of hostile religious leaders who all know about your immoral past.

Sacrificing a year’s worth of wages to a man who didn’t ask for it.

Speaking up first to a Jewish man who knows you only as an assertive Gentile woman.

Risk is what these actions share. For women in first century Palestine, these actions were each inherently risky.  (Read More)

Doing or Being?

February 16, 2012


Do any of these activities contribute to your sense of self-worth? These kinds of action words—and many others like them—validate our beliefs that we are making a difference in other people’s lives. It’s a great feeling to do something and then feel the pride of accomplishment, the exhilaration of other people’s praise, the warm glow of another’s appreciation. 

What if an accident or illness struck, and you physically could not do any of these activities anymore? What if you had no energy to serve or suffered too much pain to work? What if you were paralyzed and could literally do nothing but lie in bed? Could you accept the love of God, or even the love of your family and friends, if you were so physically incapacitated that you could do nothing but say “thank you”? (Read More)

Women of Notable Faith

February 1, 2012

Jesus explicitly mentions the faith of only three women in the Gospels. Can you guess who they are? His mother maybe? Mary Magdalene? Mary and Martha, the sisters of Lazarus? 

Nope. These women may have possessed notable faith, but the Gospel writers never mentioned it. The faith Jesus commented on belonged to three women least likely to be commended by his fellow first-century Jews:

 1. A ceremonially unclean woman who had missed worship services for 12 years.

2. A Canaanite woman who was neither an ethnic nor religious Jew.

3. A prostitute. 

Here’s what Jesus said to these women.  (Read More)

Adrianne’s Reflection on Living with Chronic Illness

October 1, 2011

My daughter, Adrianne

I wrote the first draft of The Gentle Savior in the winter of 2008, including the chapter about the times Jesus healed two women (“The Healing Touch, ” Week 3). At the time I had no personal experience with chronic illness. The following summer, my daughter Adrianne, who was 16 at the time, came down with mono. Although blood tests say that the mononucleosis virus itself is no longer in her system, her body has never recovered.

As is the case with a significant number of other young ladies who contract mono, she has since been plagued with chronic fatigue syndrome and also POTS (a circulatory disorder that causes blood to pool in her extremities). Even though these are not  life-threatening illnesses, she endures a daily struggle against pain, shortness of breath, lack of energy, frustration, and depression. We can certainly better empathize now with the chronically bleeding woman of the Gospels who spent all her money going from doctor to doctor in search of a cure.

Adrianne, now 19, is hanging in there, fighting her way through her second year of college. I asked her to share a little with you about where she is at this point. If you have experience chronic illness of any kind, I hope you’ll share your experience with us. (Read More)