Sunday, June 28, 2009

Only Believe

Today the lectionary Gospel was Mark 5: 21-43. There are two healing stories. It begins with Jesus getting out of the boat and moving through this huge crowd. A leader of the synagogue begs Jesus to go to his home where his twelve year old daughter is dying. Jesus moves through the crowd to go with him, when, remarkably, according to Mark, Jesus feels power go out of him. He asks who touched him. The disciples laugh: “Everybody touched you; why do you ask ‘who touched me?’”

The woman is overwhelmed and admits that she touched Jesus. She said: “I knew that if I could just touch your garment, I would be healed.” Twelve years she has been sick. Jesus heals her and says: “Your faith has made you whole.”

Then, Jesus moves on to the synagogue leader’s home where he finds the girl already dead and everyone in the throes of grief. Jesus says: “She is not dead; she is sleeping.” He speaks to her: “Talitha Cum”, “Get up.” She gets up and Jesus tells them to get her something to eat.

I saw faith demonstrated here. I had four points.

1. They heard about Jesus.
2. They looked for Jesus.
3. They invited Jesus into their lives.
4. They believed.

Martin Luther said: “God has made it so that all things depend on faith. Whoever has faith has everything; whoever does not have faith, has nothing.”

May we slip in among the crowds around Jesus with this man and woman of faith, and may we believe as they believed. May Jesus say to us: “Your faith has made you whole, complete, new…”

Dave Nichols

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Thanks for checking out my blog. I'm new to this, as you can probably see. But, I, like you, have convictions and ideas worth sharing. I hope this will be an opportunity to connect with others who are Christian and/or religious. I am happily United Methodist. I am committed to the basic teachings of our church, and to the compassionate outreach to the world.

I hope these pastoral ponderings will generate something in you that is hopeful.

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A graduate of Newberry College and Duke University Divinity School.  I have served as a pastor in the United Methodist Church since 1975.

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