Thursday, May 31, 2012

Things You'd See in Taiwan


Friday, June 01, 2012

Things you might see in Taiwan:















-          A family of five riding on a Moped (Scooter)
-          Billboards with American (not Taiwanese) models
-          A picture-decorated t-shirt with a formal dress shirt sewn together.
-          Traditional markets with bread makers, farmers, and butchers.
-          Chickens cooked and served in one piece- including the head and feet.
-          People stacked/sandwiched into a train car during the “rush hour.”
-          Glass huts with girls selling Beatle Nut (the local narcotic).
-          Little old men with a thatch hat riding on a rickety old bicycle in front of a bus.
-          Strange looking fruit that is actually edible.
-          Seaweed flavored anything.
-          Taiwanese adults posing for picture, after picture, after picture…. they take hundreds.
-          Ladies carrying umbrellas that double as a shade from the sun and a shield from the rain.
-          Long, LOUD, creepy religious parades at random times.
-          More temples than the Bible belt has churches.
-          A sidewalk rendered useless to pedestrians due to the scooters parked on it.
-          Families enjoying their twice-weekly entertainment: a night market with shopping, food, and games.
-          Guys toting purses- either their own or their girl-friend’s.
-          Little scooters pulling loads three times their size.
-          High piles of cardboard and other recyclable items against the wall in an apartment complex or in a living room.
-          Long sleeve shirts or extra sleeves being worn in the middle of summer to avoid a tan.
-          Guys wearing clothing with lots of “bling” and shine. (it is commonly difficult to tell the difference between a girl and a guy)
-          Military guards at elementary schools.

"Ye have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in My Name, He may give it you." John 15:16

God's Servant,
Barbara J. Sutton

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

God is... the Name Above All


Name Above
All Names



“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
Philippians 2:5-11

What does your name mean?  Mine means “beautiful pilgrim.”  Names are important. They give a short description of the person to whom they are attached, perhaps a virtue or a personality feature, or even a vice. Often, a child that is given a name at birth will live up to their name- good or bad. -Perhaps that’s why I like to travel so much. ;)

Mary means sea of bitterness. Biblically speaking, you can see how this name evolved in the first chapter of the book of Ruth, when Naomi requests to be called by the name “Mara” instead of Naomi.

Baal means lord. This is the god of the Canaanites, Phoenicians, Babylonians, etc. in O. T. times. You may see it listed with another name, to tell you what that god lorded over, as in Baal-Gad (god of fortune); or in the plural, as in Baalim.

Buddha means enlightened one, rooted from the actual ancient Chinese prophet. (Though in his case, I don’t think it was a good angel that enlightened him.)

God the Almighty said that HIS name is above every other name. Since a name is an attribute, a virtue, or a description of a person, in a roundabout way He’s saying, HE is above every person on earth. Better, stronger, bigger, and more important. Anything you can do, He can do better. The whole world revolves around Him.

And that’s the way it should be.

He IS the God of the universe. First of all, He existed before the world. Then, He made everything we know to be. He desired friendship, so He formed mankind. He created time, and He planned the END. You and I are part of His gigantic play to bring honor and glory to Himself. He ALONE is above all.

“And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.”
Revelation 5:13

Sunday, May 27, 2012

God is... Master of the Wind





Master of the Wind

Anyone who knows my sister well knows that she loves storms. In fact, whenever she has a problem or a big decision to make, she will ask God to send a storm. -A big one, with lots of thunder and lightning. Sure enough. There may not be a storm on the forecast, but God will send her one.

Most people think of the name Master of the Wind as associated with this verse:

“And He arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.” (Mark 4:39)

Our God is so powerful he can stop the storms, whether real or figurative. However, the same God that can STOP storms can also SEND storms. And that is precisely what my sister wants.

A storm brewing in Douliu, Taiwan.
Though it seems strange to want a storm, my sister has a better handle on meeting God than I do. She knows that there, in the midst of the thunder, is God’s presence. It is THERE that he shares secrets. My sister often reminds me of the verse in Psalms that says

“Thou calledst in trouble, and I delivered thee; I answered thee in the secret place of thunder: I proved thee at the waters of Meribah. Selah.” (Psalm 81:7)

Of course, a storm is not the only place you can meet; quite the contrary! -God came to Job in a still, small voice. However, there is something very special about thunder. The reference to Meribah hints at this verses’ historical significance. Reading the verse in context will complete that thought. This verse is reminding the reader of something that God did in the past, so that the reader will trust God in the present.

The story is amazing. You can read it in Exodus 20.

Lightning. Thunder. POWER.

(This picture is courtesy of the internet.)
The people were so scared, they told Moses to go and meet God for them. They understood God’s presence was there. -But they were afraid that God would strike them dead instead of desiring to have a relationship with this powerful Being. Moses knew God though, and he knew that God was safe. That, those who seek Him will find Him.

This is what my sister has also discovered.

And I have to agree. I’ve started praying for those storms myself…

Friday, May 25, 2012

Quiet Child = Trouble; In More Ways Than One

Friday, May 25, 2012

Dear Praying Friends,

Where has May gone? It seems it was just a week ago that May began. Yesterday was the two month marker…  I’ll be home soon!

No smiles. Really.
Quiet break times, solemn faces, homesick tears, blank eyes, coldness; these things met us with the group this week. Though a quieter class can be easier on the teachers, it doesn’t mean fewer problems. It’s hard to know what a child is thinking when you get no response. Nothing. Not a smile, not a question, no participation, nada.

Perhaps it was because they came from low income homes. Maybe it was the fact that we mixed 3 schools together that didn’t know each other. Or it could have been that they just didn’t warm up as quickly as most. For whatever reason, they were shy.

My heart went out to them. I always feel sad when I see children who don’t smile, and I can’t imagine what their life must be like to make them so sober at such a young age. It took work to think of extra things that they would enjoy doing in class, or finding activities to draw them out. -And every class, there was a child who just sat there and looked in their book, completely uninterested.  I just wanted to pull them close and give them a hug; but they weren’t a huggy group.

Of in his own world...
By the end of the week, some of the children did improve. It was nice to catch a smile on a few faces, and even to see them sad to leave.

Sometimes, I think the quieter kids are harder to reach. As my mom used to say, "If a child is quiet, they're usually in trouble." She meant it as in making a mess or doing something naughty, but I think with this group, it meant something was wrong on the inside. 

Please pray! The harvest is so white. These children need Jesus. Taiwan needs Jesus.

“Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things which thou knowest not.” Jeremiah 33:3

Happy in the Service of the King,
Barbara J. Sutton

It's SO nice for the boys to have a male teacher!

Monday, May 21, 2012

God is... the Lamb


Lamb of God
Throughout the history of Israel, lambs play a key role.

Adam and Eve lived in a perfect environment. Everything was provided for them. They had one command: “Don’t eat of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” With hundreds of other choices, this should have been easy. However, the heart of man is evil continually. After concluding that God’s request was unreasonable, as the fruit was very good, Eve took of the fruit and gave to Adam as well. You know the story.  They now, for the first time, realize that they are naked; and they hide from the face of the Lord. He asks them where they are and “guesses” that they disobeyed. Then the blame-game starts.

In all this story, there is one verse where God sets the standard for centuries. “Unto Adam also and to his wife did the Lord God make coats of skins, and clothed them.” (Genesis 3:21)

Wait. 

WHERE DID THE SKINS COME FROM? 

Up until this point in time, there has been no death. None at all. -Not even a mosquito. It makes me begin to wonder, and my imagination begins to fill in the details that the Scripture omits. Of course, imagination is far from inspired, but humor me just a bit, okay?

After telling them their punishments, Adam and Eve look down at themselves. They are so ashamed to be naked, and their leaf aprons leave so much to be desired. Then God calls over a lamb. As he prepares to slay it, Adam shudders and Eve begins to cry. They had named this lamb. They had cared for this lamb. It was almost like a pet. And now, because of their sin, God has to kill it. The lamb had no fault! But the lamb took the ultimate blame by giving its life so that they could be clothed. I can imagine God giving instructions on how to do it, explaining the purpose of the sacrifice, and how it was a picture of His Perfect Lamb to come. He was setting a pattern for centuries to come. As the Lord prepares the skins and drapes them over their shoulders, the reality of their sin sets in. THEY had sinned. Therefore, THEY had to kill that lamb. The lamb is now covering their sin.

Adam told his sons, and they told their sons. Each generation carefully relates the story to the next generation as they prepare to give sacrifices to the Lord. Filled with shame, they explains that because Adam had sinned, sin passed on all mankind. Sin is natural. It is anything they think, say, or do that breaks God’s law. They too, needed a covering of righteousness.

Hundreds of years later, Jesus Christ, the Perfect Lamb came on the scene. He was the Son of God. He did no wrong. Yet, he took the shame and blame of my sin, and exchanged it for the covering of Righteousness.  “The next day, John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.”(John 1:29)

Even as I write this, tears well up in my eyes.  My sin.  My pride, selfishness, lust, anger, impatience, and independence put Him on that cross! He didn’t deserve to die. However, just as the lamb took the ultimate cost of Adam and Eve’s sin, Christ paid the ultimate cost for my sin. Now I too can stand fully clothed in a coat of righteousness, clean in the sight of God.

Jesus Christ died for you too. Will you admit your sin and let His righteousness cover you?

"Knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, silver or gold, from your vain manner of life handed down from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot; indeed having been foreknown before the foundation of the world, but revealed in the last times for you, those believing in God through Him, He who raised Him up from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope might be in God. Purifying your souls in the obedience of the truth through the Spirit to unfeigned love of the brothers, love one another fervently out of a pure heart, having been born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, through the living Word of God, and abiding forever."  (1 Peter 1:18-23 MKJV)

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Office Week 204


Friday, May 18, 2012

Dear Fellow Workers in Christ,

I am so excited! Only 10 weeks left until I go home! YES!!!

The quiet has been so nice. I won’t lie. It has been nice to have quiet evenings and be able to finish work uninterrupted during the day. -I suppose this is the way a mom feels on a rare day off.

assessing the ruins
Mother’s Day Sunday, I joined a few others on a sightseeing trip to Sanyi. We went to see the broken down train bridge which collapsed in an earthquake years ago. It was neat to see what was left standing of the old brick structure, and to take pictures.

Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday were quiet. I had a lot of paperwork to do, emails to write, and pictures to edit, on top of meetings and my usual violin practice, so I stayed busy. -The rest of the office must have been encumbered as well, for they were quiet too. Wednesday pretty much was meetings all day, though the movie was a nice break.

Believe it or not, the main role you see in the middle is played by a boy.
Thursday, I had the opportunity to join the CEI staff in visiting a school’s presentation day. Each grade gave a performance of some sort, as did the taichi group and music class. Some of them were quite creative. It is always fun to meet up with old students again, and very precious to watch them perform a character skit to teach their fellow-students about helping others. They WERE listening! Because the Taiwanese are all about achievement and performance, their presentations are over the top. The kids are very well trained and look very professional.

Today, there is a total of THREE in the office- and we are all English teachers. The other teachers went to a school to teach a follow-up character class. So, we have the day to ourselves. This morning, we teased that we could reinvent the office hours to be whatever we wanted, because no one else is here. I wish I’d thought of that BEFORE my alarm went off… Oh well. Maybe next time. ;)

I am going to take a moment to ask for your coveted prayers in a specific area. As the time for our return to the States approaches, it is very stressful on the team. Of course, anytime you live with someone for a year, there is going to be struggles. Pray for our team to have one mind in serving the Lord, and for us to finish with a strong testimony of Jesus, to stay healthy, and to exemplify the character we teach. Thank you all.

Serving our Awesome Saviour,
Barbara J. Sutton



Monday, May 14, 2012

God is... Keeper


Keeper
I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth. He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber. Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep. The LORD is thy keeper: the LORD is thy shade upon thy right hand. The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night. The LORD shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul. The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.
Psalms 121:1-8

I love this passage! You will notice that I emphasized a few words- the same ones I have underlined in my Bible. Six times the Psalmist uses keep and preserve.

When I was a kid, my mom gave each of us Rubbermaid totes to keep things under our bed. These were not for ordinary things, like shoes. No. We called these our “Keepo Boxes.”  All my “treasures,” like special cards, certificates, precious pictures, or my favorite small toys, were carefully arranged in this box to keep for years to come.

Sometimes I imagine God has a similar “box” about me, storing my personality, my family, my experiences, my treasured moments, and similar things. It’s more than my salvation. These are the things that make ME who I am, and God designed every detail! He keeps me.

Not that He needs a box.

Jesus said that I am in His hands, and His hands are in the Father’s, so NOTHING can get at me.

When my mom seals a jar of peaches, it is shut. Nothing; not even mold can enter the jar. No bugs. Children even struggle to get in, until mom breaks the seal. A sealed jar of peaches lasts for years. In fact, I remember going through my great-grandmother’s pantry and pulling out jars of peaches that had lasted 15 years!

In Christ, I am kept for eternity.  Though things in life may put a barrier between His presence and I, His love cannot be dimmed. Romans 8 clearly states that God’s love reaches down, around, between, and beyond anything that might come my way.

He keeps me, His precious treasure.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Taiwan Update: Week 210


Friday, May 11, 2012

Dear Fellow Workers in Christ,

Excitement flowed through the air as the bus arrived on Monday. Nearly forty children peered out the windows, smiling and waving to the teachers below.  With so many children and a packed classroom, we are doubly grateful for our new teachers.

Kate must surely be a mercy by spiritual gift. Whenever there is a crying child, she can be found comforting them. She is usually the first to see something happen between children, and goes to mediate the issue. In one English class this week, Jo talked about her home and family and explained how long we have to wait before going home. Then she encouraged them to stick with it- Friday comes fast. As she dismissed, one of the girls burst into tears. Kate drew her close, gave her a hug, and encouraged her until the tears disappeared. She is truly a blessing to the children, and dear to the rest of the team.

Nick is an amazing great help with the boys. One night after work, those of us teachers that live here were all relaxing in the office. All of the sudden, the boy’s dorm erupted in noise. It sounded almost like a riot. Nick quietly got up and went to help the teacher in the dorm. There were a couple of very active boys in class. Without disrupting the class, Nick would quietly talk with them, or take them to the back to deal with them. Most of the children do not have great fathers, and it is good to have such a positive (and Christian!) role model for them. (Oh, and a bonus, he lived in the States and speaks fluent English.)

Jen is great with the kids too, playing with them, taking pictures, and on more than one occasion, encouraging their character. She is a cheerful presence who loves to tease, and is a always complimenting someone for something. However, I particularly appreciate Jen for another reason. We are TESOL certified to teach English, and Jen has a similar certificate to teach Mandarin. I will say something to her, and she will nod, and then say “Now tell me in Chinese.” It is such a help to force me to use the Chinese I know with someone who can understand what I’m trying to say in English. Praise the Lord for Jen’s servant - teacher attitude.

On Monday, we all prayed hard for this group of kids. What a group! They were inattentive, loud, and boisterous. Perhaps that’s what made their change seem so dramatic. Even as soon as Tuesday, they were more attentive, and obedient in class. Outside of class, they adored the teachers, and would race out into break time yelling our names. Yes, they still will loud and sometimes hard to control, but they were quick to listen and change to show character.

Several of the children wanted to play violin this week. They said “Laoshi jiao women!” Most of these kids are too poor to own a violin much less pay for lessons. They may never have a chance to touch a violin ever again. So, three girls learned to play Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star, and a few others learned how to hold it and play it. What was neat was how, after I taught one, she taught another, and they taught other children. That is the way teaching should work! Teach them so that they are able to teach others. It's times like this that make me wish I had 3/4 violins to give to them in reward of their hard work.





Happy in the Service of the King,
Barbara J. Sutton

(I suppose you are wondering "Have you really  been their for 210 weeks?" The answer is, it's my filing system. The two is for second semester, and the 10 is for the camp week number. It's week 10 of the 2nd semester.)

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

God is... Joyful Presence


Joyful Presence


“Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy;
at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.”
Psalms 16:11

“Then will I go unto the altar of God, unto God my exceeding joy:
yea, upon the harp will I praise thee, O God my God.”
Psalms 43:4

“The meek also shall increase their joy in the LORD,
and the poor among men shall rejoice in the Holy One of Israel.”
Isaiah 29:19

“Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation.”
Habakkuk 3:18

“The LORD thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy;
he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing.”
Zephaniah 3:17

“And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.”
Luke 2:10-11

I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth,
more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.
Luke 15:7

These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you,
and that your joy might be full.
John 15:11

And ye now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice,
and your joy no man taketh from you.
John 16:22

“Thou hast made known to me the ways of life;
thou shalt make me full of joy with thy countenance.”
Acts 2:28

“For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink;
but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.”
Romans 14:17

“And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.”
1 John 1:4

“Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling,
and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy,”
Jude 1:24

Monday, May 7, 2012

God is... Immanuel


Immanuel
“Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.”
Matthew 1:23


*There are two spellings of this word, one OT and the other NT. Perhaps the difference is linguistic, for they mean the same thing. I chose this one because it starts with I. ;)*

Though this special name is only mentioned three times in the whole Bible, the concept flows throughout the Bible. Our God is a big God, He is holy and just, yet He is not untouchable. This has never been so precious to me than while living here in Taiwan.

Buddha lives in the temple, in his little house. -But not always. Their god (i.e. demon) does not always possess its statue. Most of the time, their god is empty and still. At best, their god is infrequent and unreliable, only showing up possibly for special occasions or people. His presence is celebrated, his absence strikes fear and uncertainty.

You see the same exact actions with Elijah on Mount Carmel. (1 Kings 18:20-39) The people worked so hard to get their god’s attention so he would come and show his presence and power. Elijah mocked them a little bit, for it seems strange to trust in something so fallible and limited like that. Then, Elijah prayed, and God sent fire from heaven to accept his sacrifice.  Gratefully, the same God that proved His existence and power to Elijah and the crowds is still the same God we serve today.

I’m so glad to know that my God is with me. The whole climax of the Bible leads to how God visited His people in person, to show them His love. Then, though Jesus’ physical body left the earth, He promised the presence of His Holy Spirit in the lives of Believers. HE IS HERE. He is Immanuel. -And He is always, forever, with me!

“Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for He hath visited and redeemed His people, And hath raised up an horn of salvation for us in the house of His servant David;” 
Luke 1:68-69

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Not "Just Another Office Week"


Friday, May 4, 2012

Dear Praying Friends,

You are so important! I can definitely feel your prayers, and God’s help is absolutely essential. Thank you for your care, prayers, and notes of encouragement!

I apologize yet again. Last week I completely missed the newsletter, and I don’t even have a great excuse. Sorry folks.

Last week, we had a full class of 30 students, 2/3 of which, were boys! Needless to say, they were very loud and roudy. For the most part though, they were good kids. The girls loved to claim hugs and the boys would solicit high fives, soaking in the love of the teachers. Though it took a lot of energy, it was definitely a fun week.

This week is an office week. -And I have lots to say this time, because I wasn’t in the office. ;)

Picture courtesy of Kelsey Wolfley


class in the auditorium

War! with the English teacher.
English conversation class: BASEBALL!


On Sunday, I travelled to Taijhong to meet up with the Wolfley sisters from Dajia CEI. I had the privilege of spending 3 days with them, surveying the ministry there. This is very much an unusual occurrence, as most teachers do not get to see where they will work ahead of time. The  girls teach 23 classes a week, 20 of which are solo. They work with 6(?) schools, and see over 2000 faces a week. Whew!

On Monday and Tuesday, they worked on sentence structure in their classes by having the children “interview” me. Then, I would show a powerpoint of pictures and play some fiddling for them. The students were very good, and one class asked a LOT of good questions.

In 3 out of the 4 schools I visited, I was able to meet the principal and teachers I would be working with if I indeed get to return next year. They LOVE their English teachers and seem to take very good care of them. The girls have very few needs that they have to take care of themselves.

Wednesday, the English teacher at their main school came to ask a question. “What’s the difference between ‘There is some…’ and ‘There are some…”?  Good question. What is the difference???? The three of us Americans put our heads together to find the answer. Then, I got to teach the concept to the kids.

I really enjoyed my time there and look forward to what God will have for me, whether there or somewhere else next year. Please pray for the 44 TESOL teachers who will come next year.

Late Wednesday afternoon, I returned to Douliou. We have 3 new teachers in the office!  Nick, Jen, and Kat have joined the team for seven weeks. Nick is a Christian. Praise the Lord! Thursday and Friday we have meetings, so business as usual.

Happy in the Service of the King,
Barbara J. Sutton

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Who Will Go?

Here is a short promo video of the work here in Taiwan. Consider the call. Will you go?

 

God is... Healer


Healer


“Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies; Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle's." 
(Psalms 103:2-5)

Imagine. Just imagine for a moment, what it would have been like to have been one of the lepers that Jesus completely, instantly healed with just a word. -Or perhaps the blind man, who had lived all his life as a beggar when Jesus took compassion on him and healed him. All the struggles of life are turned in an instant in to joy. God is the Great Physician; he heals all our diseases.

One of my favorite stories in the Bible is that of the woman who had an issue of blood. Nothing much is said about her background, and she isn’t very prominent. In fact, her story is squeezed almost awkwardly in the middle of another healing miracle. It leaves much to the imagination...

Twelve years of questions without answers. Twelve years of living as simply as possible, in order to pay for doctor bills. Twelve years of people avoiding you (their culture, sickness meant isolation). Here is a woman who has travelled extensively to specialized doctors, and no one can help her. I can imagine the feeling of helplessness, frustration, and degradation.

And yet, she did not give up hope. She kept searching. Looking. Hoping.

Eventually, rumors reach her about a Man who has healed many with just a word. Hope surges in her innermost being. THIS is the answer. He could heal her. There was no doubt in her mind that this Man could do it, just that perhaps He would not want to heal her.

She hears that this Man, named Jesus, is passing through nearby.  Without thinking about arranging her affairs, she leaves her home in a hurry to catch Him. The question lingering in her mind, Would Jesus want to heal her?  After a day of travel, she reached the town where He had been reported healing, and asked where Jesus was.  The people told her she had missed Him. He had hurried off to heal the daughter of a great ruler. However, if she hurried, she might be able to overtake Him.

The woman’s heart sank. She had nothing to offer Jesus such as the ruler would have. All her resources had been spent seeing doctors who had deemed her a helpless cause. To go home and sell things to be able to pay Jesus would take several days, and she might miss Him all together. She slept restlessly on the street that night, waiting for morning to dawn.

As the sun was just peeking over the horizon, she trudged slowly out of town. Her energy was waning. Her hope was faltering, but still alive. This Jesus had unordinary power to heal. No witchcraft. No strange rituals. No potions. -Just a single word. Everyone who saw Him work glorified God.  As she thought about all she’d heard, her steps lightened, and her energy came back in force. If this man came from God, He would not need her gift or compensation!

The day dragged on, and just as she began to wonder if this trip too would end in vain, she saw a large crowd of people in the distance. Could this crowd be following Jesus? Hope surged in her heart, and it took all her remaining energy to run toward the crowd.

Once again she faced an obstacle. How would she get to Jesus? He chatted with His disciples, and they were quite a number. The last thing she wished to do was interrupt Him. At last, she knew. This Man had such authority, that if she could only touch His garment, she would doubtless be healed. She pushed herself through the crowd as politely as she could, until she reached an inseparable wall of people. Reaching her hand through the people, she touched the hem of Jesus’ garment.

Immediately, she felt strength return to her body. Instant healing!

The rest is recorded in Scripture. Jesus knew someone had touched His garment because  He felt virtue leave His body. Then He told her that her faith made her whole. (ref. Matthew 9:20-22, Luke 8:43-48)

What a story! God heals. Not to receive money, but to glorify the Father. Not because we DO anything, but through FAITH in Him.

That’s just how Powerful our God is. He has such authority, that our mere faith in Him, brings healing. -Not because our faith, but because HE IS SO GREAT! What a mighty God we serve!

She only touched the hem of His garment

As to His side she stole,
Amid the crowd that gathered around Him,
And straightway she was whole.
Oh, touch the hem of His garment!
And thou, too, shalt be free!
His saving power this very hour
Shall give new life to thee!
~George F. Root~