“A woman who had had a hemorrhage for twelve years, and had endured much at the hands of many physicians, and had spent all that she had and was not helped at all, but rather had grown worse—after hearing about Jesus, she came up in the crowd behind Him and touched His cloak.” Mark 5:25–27
Empty is rarely viewed as a positive thing. No one feels good about an empty stomach, an empty gas tank, or an empty bank account. Such situations often lead to acts of desperation. But being empty and desperate isn’t necessarily a negative thing. As a matter of fact, the woman in Mark 5 teaches us the value of being empty and the power of desperate faith.
First, this woman was empty physically; the result of an ongoing, debilitating sickness. She was also financially empty; spending everything on doctors who couldn’t cure her disease. And she was emotionally empty; her hopes dashed from medical treatments that promised relief but failed. In her desperation, however, she didn’t give up. She mustered the hope and energy for another try. This time, going to Jesus.
You see, the value of being empty is that it drives us to Jesus. At the point of salvation, we come to the realization that we cannot help ourselves. As we receive His life into ours, He fills our emptiness with His life. Then as believers we willingly empty ourselves daily. The Apostle John described it best in John 3:30, “He must increase, but I must decrease.”
While the value of being empty applies to our physical, financial, and emotional state; it’s most valuable to our spiritual well-being. We don’t have to be in a desperate situation to be desperate for Jesus. Like the woman in Mark 5, are you ready to throw pride and pretense out the window? In her emptiness, she went from trying anything to trusting the only One Who could help.
Jesus is more than capable of filling your emptiness. But in order to know the joy of God’s fullness, you must empty yourself of dependence on anything other than Christ. By allowing Him to fully occupy your thoughts and affections, He can then pour His love out to the desperate and empty world around you. Are you desperate for Jesus today?