“While He spoke these things to them, behold, a ruler came and worshiped Him, saying, “My daughter has just died, but come and lay Your hand on her and she will live.” Matthew 9:18
In just nine verses Matthew summarizes the telling of two very beautiful stories of healing. The first of these overlapping stories is that of the resurrection of Jairus’ daughter. Matthew doesn’t include the identity of the ruler that made the request but Mark provides the name in his gospel. The second is the healing of the woman who touched Jesus’ robe.
In the first story a grief stricken Jairus comes to Jesus and reports that his daughter has just died but that he is sure that if Jesus will come and lay his hands on her that she will live. Jesus agrees to Jairus’ request, goes to the ruler’s home, sends the mourners out of the room in which the girl is lying, takes her by the hand and raises her from the dead.
The second story happened on the way to the ruler’s house. Once again it’s Mark that provides the most details in his account. Jesus and his disciples are being jostled by the press of the crowd when Jesus stopped and looked around. In all the people pushing to be close to him a woman in need of healing, believing that if she could only touch his garment that she could be healed, had managed to slip up to Jesus and brush her fingers against He’s clothing. Immediately she was healed. But Jesus wasn’t going to just let her slip away. God had blessed her with a precious gift of healing and he deserved the praise she could give. After she had told her story Jesus then assured her that it was her faith that had made her well.
Faith is a powerful thing. And the thing is that it doesn’t require great faith to possess that power. Even a small fragment of faith can work wonders if the one possessing that faith will act upon it. Jairus’ faith was only big enough to go and ask for Jesus to come to his home. We know from other accounts that the healing could have been accomplished from a distance, but Jairus’ faith wasn’t that big. But it was big enough to go and get Jesus to touch his daughter so that he could give her life. The woman that was healed had even bigger faith than Jairus. She believed that Jesus could heal her without even being conscious that he had done so. Turns out she was wrong. Jesus was very alert to the flow of healing energy moving from his body so he was aware that someone had been healed. She was correct, however, when she believed that if she could just touch him she could be made well. It was her faith that took hold of her healing.
There is so much that our faith could accomplish in our lives if we would just take action. There are healings that could be affected. There is strength for our work that could be taken hold of. There is courage that can be acquired, and there are victories that can be claimed and won. All theses and more are ours if we will just act on the faith God has given us. We may only feel that we have a very small amount of faith but that minuscule faith can work wonders if we’ll just act on it.