What does it take to get the Lord to meet your needs? How come some people get their needs met regularly and others are in constant frustration? Does it have to do with how smart the person is? Or, is it all just based on how much faith each person has? We’ve all known people who had a lot of faith and whose needs weren’t met. There has to be more to it than that. Or is it that some are just better at praying?
There’s another trait you need that really makes the critical difference. You’ll find it in action in the life of the woman with the issue of blood. Her story is found in Luke 8:43-48.
The Bible tells you that this woman had an incurable disease. She had an unstoppable hemorrhage of blood. She had it for years and had spent all her money going from one doctor to another. Her disease drained her not only financially, but it took her energy, and ruined her social life.
This disease also wrecked her spiritual life because it kept her from going into the Temple, to worship God. In the Bible days, a person with a running hemorrhage was considered unclean, because of the germs and diseases that can be carried in blood. So, people who were hemorrhaging weren’t allowed in the Temple, and weren’t invited to parties or other social gatherings.
Her problem took her health, her money, her strength and her social life. And, it produced in her the vital trait for getting blessings from God. Through her problem, she developed the trait of desperation.
She had also learned about what was really important in life. It helped give her the edge that she needed when she came to Jesus.
Specifically, she was totally aware that she was dying day by day. That’s a good knowledge to come in. see, most people don’t really think they’re EVER going to die. Even a lot of Christmas are like this.
They live as though earth was their home. They give their time towards foolishness are spend their strength on things that are useless as far as eternity is concerned. That’s why they never have the desperate enough to touch the hem of Jesus’ garment.
The second thing this woman had learned was this: money can’t buy what you really need. Again, most people still think that most of their problems can be solved if they can just get their hands on some more money.
Multi-millionaire Ted Turner said, “Millions don’t count for much anymore. A dollar is worth about one hundredth as much as it was when I was a youngster. Money becomes worthless. According to Jesus Christ, money is worthless. It won’t buy you anything in Heaven…it might not even get you in.”
Guess what? Money won’t EVEN get you in the door to Heaven. But, loving it and letting it come between you and God, or you and your worshiping at the House of God WILL wreck your spiritual life.
God says in Isaiah 55:2, “Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread? And your labor for that which satisfieth not? Hearken diligently unto Me, and eat that which is good, and let your SOUL (instead of your flesh) delight itself in fatness!”
Third, she learned not to let anybody or any circumstance come between her and her walk with God. We tend to let just about any excuse or any person hold us back from Him. We’ll let out of town company keep us from the House of God. We’ll let the fact that we’re on vacation from work keep us from attending a Gospel preaching church on Sunday morning, when we’re out of town.
We’ll let the boss’ request for putting in overtime keep us away from the House of God. Someone said that Judas required thirty pieces of silver; Americans require time and a half!
This woman had learned through her struggles that she needed to be focused, obsessed and desperate for God to move in her life. Most prayers aren’t answered because they’re prayed so half-heartedly that it doesn’t even seem like we care much whether God answers them or not.
The woman “came from behind Him and touched the hem of his garment.” This is proof of her determination to get to Jesus. There was a dense crowd of people between her and Jesus. There was no way she could just walk into His presence, like you and I can.
No, she had to find some other way to get into the presence of Jesus, or miss her opportunity forever.
The next obstacle she had to overcome was the attitude of the disciples. At this stage of Jesus’ ministry, the disciples spent a lot of their efforts on crowd control. They made sure that Jesus wouldn’t be overcrowded or crushed by the crowds that thronged Him.
Sometimes, you need to overcome your fear of the attitudes of the disciples – those people who have known Jesus longer than you have! If you let them, they’ll make you feel too bad, too dirty or too unimportant to come to Jesus! But she was coming to come to Jesus who said, “He that cometh to Me, I will in no wise cast out (John 6:37).”
The third obstacle for her to overcome was just the importance of Jesus, and her own insignificance. Here He was with so much to do and so many people who needed Him. And here she was, a no body. She was sickly, poor and outcast. But still, she pressed on to touch Jesus.
You have to decide what is most important to you, what the people think, or getting into the place where Jesus can meet your needs. That means putting aside those other people, interests and distractions. There’s no hope for you in mankind or in the things of this world. What your soul needs is the present and very real hand of Jesus in your heart.
She knew that touching Jesus Christ would make her whole. “…and as many as touched Him were made whole (Mark 6:56).” And, when she touched Jesus, virtue went out of Him and into her point of need. Her deliverance came by her contact with Jesus.
He said in verse 46, “Somebody hath touched me, for I perceive that virtue is gone out of me.” What is virtue? In the Bible sense, virtue is “the power of good; life –giving substance; that which imparts power and life.”
When you touch Jesus, the power that you need will flow from Him and into your life. Power to overcome anger; power to overcome bitterness, jealousy and depression. Power to overcome drugs and alcohol. Power to live upright and godly in this present age.
This woman exercised greater faith than the healthy ones around her. There were many who were closer to Jesus, but they didn’t exercise their faith. Lots of people surround Jesus, but they don’t use their faith. Jesus was sensitive to her faith, and He is sensitive to YOUR touch.
Her testimony touched others. The woman then realized that Jesus saw her, and she couldn’t hide. Trembling, she told Jesus why she had touched Him, and she declared to the crowd what had happened.
Her words are the only ones that have been recorded in God’s book – her words of testimony. When she touched Jesus, she became able to touch others.
Hebrews 4:13 tells us that nothing is hidden from God, but that all creatures are manifest in His sight. He sees you and all that you’re doing. And, he’s sees your struggles, your hopes, your efforts and your fears. He sees your heart, and what you really mean, when you do some of the things you do. He sees your pain, your loneliness, your guilt and uncertainties.
What’s the issue in your life? Jesus will release the “power of good” into your situation. For you, it might be the power of forgiveness and the hope of new life. Or, it might be the power to lay aside that sin, or to overcome that habit. Maybe it’s the power to walk in total obedience that you need, or the power to be a better spouse, parent or family member.
Push your way past the obstacles and touch the hem of Jesus’ garment, and…be made totally whole!