“For she thought, ‘If I just touch His garments, I will get well.’ Immediately the flow of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of her affliction.” Mark 5:28–29
Most followers of Jesus Christ want to be people of great faith. Yet, there are days when it’s difficult to act on that faith; trusting the Lord alone to overcome our challenges. The desperate woman in Mark 5 teaches us three important lessons about overcoming obstacles to faith.
First, focus on what you know; not on what you don’t. All this woman knew was what she heard (v27). Jesus had miraculously healed many. As a result, more and more people believed He was the Messiah. She probably had unanswered questions, but rather than letting those create doubt, she choose Jesus as the objective of her faith. This doesn’t mean that people of faith act in ignorance. We simply respond to the truth of God’s Word rather than letting our unanswered questions dictate our beliefs or behavior.
Next, a little faith goes a long way. We often allow the size of our crisis to intimidate us. Sooner or later we all come face-to-face with a seemingly impossible circumstance. That’s where Matthew 17:20 comes in, “…if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you.” A mustard seed of faith was all this woman had and it was enough!
It’s important to note that ongoing illnesses and challenges aren’t necessarily a sign of weak faith. Sometimes that mustard seed of faith is what maintains our trust in the Lord when He allows difficulty to continue.
Finally, faith takes precedence over feelings. The type of illness this woman had made her an outcast. Yet, she wasn’t intimidated by the crowd pressing in around Jesus (v31). She also didn’t allow pride or fear to take her faith hostage (v33). Faith will always take us further than our emotions can go.
What obstacles to faith do you need to overcome? Like the woman in today’s passage, don’t be intimidated by the crowd around you, the crisis in front of you, or the fear within you. You can trust Jesus as the object of your faith. And when you trust Him with all the faith you have, you’ll be amazed at all that He will do.