January 6, 2009
A Desperate Faith
“Then one of the synagogue rulers, named Jairus, came there. Seeing Jesus, he fell at his feet and pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live.” (Mark 5:22-23, NIV)
Friend to Friend
I had a painful phone conversation with a girlfriend this week. She’s heavy with hurt. Spiritually paralyzed by circumstances. Her faith has been greatly challenged and weakened. It broke my heart. I wanted to reach through the phone line and hug her. I wanted to lift her burdens and solve all her problems, but, of course, I couldn’t. So I listened, reminded her of God’s love for her, and prayed.
Back in the days of Jesus’ ministry, a man, desperate for a miracle, approached Jesus and fell before him. His daughter was dying. Jesus was his only hope. Here’s how it played out in the Message version:
"After Jesus crossed over by boat, a large crowd met him at the seaside. One of the meeting-place leaders named Jairus came. When he saw Jesus, he fell to his knees, beside himself as he begged, “My dear daughter is at death’s door. Come and lay hands on her so she will get well and live.” Jesus went with him, the whole crowd tagging along, pushing and jostling him.” (Mark 5:21-24, MSG)
Along the way, Jesus healed a woman who had suffered from a bleeding disorder for twelve long years. Jesus said that her faith made her well. “Daughter, you took a risk of faith, an now you’re healed and whole. Live well, lived blessed! Be healed of your plague.” (Mark 5:34, MSG)
“While he was still talking, some people came from the leader’s house and told him, “Your daughter is dead. Why bother the Teacher any more?” Jesus overheard what they were talking about and said to the leader, “Don’t listen to them; just trust me.”
He permitted no one to go in with him except Peter, James, and John. They entered the leader’s house and pushed their way through the gossips looking for a story and neighbors bringing casseroles. Jesus was abrupt: “Why all this busybody grief and gossip? This child isn’t dead; she’s sleeping.” Provoked to sarcasm, they told him he didn’t know what he was talking about.
But when he had sent them all out, he took the child’s father and mother, along with his companions, and entered the child’s room. He clasped the girl’s hand and said “Talitha koum,” which means “Little girl, get up.” At that, she was up and walking around! This girl was twelve years of age. They, of course, were all beside themselves with joy.” (Mark 5:35-42, MSG)
Like Jairus and the bleeding woman, I’ve found that when life is hardest, the best thing I can do is take my need to Jesus. In the times when I fall before Him in prayer, He sustains and strengthens me … but in the times that I try to handle things in my own strength, I am weak and ineffective.
Desperate times call for a desperate faith. As Christians, we have faith in a person - God. Faith in and of itself is meaningless, but faith in an all-seeing, all-knowing, all-powerful God means everything … because He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Faith is the core of our lives. It is essential to pleasing God. He wants us to trust Him in every trial and through every trouble. “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6, NIV)
Are you desperate for a miracle today? Is the declining economy, the burden of debt, or soaring unemployment rate affecting you or someone you love? Perhaps you bear the pain of a broken marriage, broken dreams, or a broken body. If you are desperate for healing, help, and hope, ask the Lord to increase your faith today, and make a determined choice to trust Him.
Heavenly Father, You are a mighty God, and I’m in need of Your power in my life. I beg You to move! Please fan the flame of my faith today. I trust that You are in control and ask that You would sustain and strengthen me to face every challenge.
In Jesus’ Name I pray,
Now It’s Your Turn
Need encouragement? Allow this prayer song to lift your heart to God’s. I wrote in a time when I was overwhelmed with hard times. Turn your speakers up and CLICK HERE.
Read and memorize Matthew 11:28-30. “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
More from the Girlfriends
Beth Moore once said, “Desperation can be the sweetest gift God ever gave you.” I agree. God longs to be our Refuge and Rest in the midst of every storm. If you love music, order Gwen’s CD, Unsearchable, and allow the songs to usher you into God’s presence and fill your heart with praises.
Gwen Smith is a worship artist, songwriter, speaker, and author. Visit her website at: www.gwensmith.net.
Click here to learn more about hosting a Girlfriends in God conference in your area or having one of the GiGs speak at your next women's event.
Originally published Tuesday, 06 January 2009.