How far are you wiling to go for Jesus?

My dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

The title may be a bit misleading because I actually am asking what are you willing to do in order to touch the hem of Jesus' garment?  Mark 5 contains the story of the woman who "had been subject to bleeding for twelve years" and it is one of my favorite passages.  I find it very inspirational because of what this woman had to go through in order to touch the hem of Jesus' garment.  She had an issue of blood for twelve years and as was the custom in that day, having an issue of bodily fluid meant you were cut off from any human contact and considered unclean.  Likely this was done to prevent any further spreading of the disease if that is what the problem was.  This woman spent all she had on doctors to no avail and her health continued to decline.  So we have here a desparate woman who is cut off from her family, broke, sick, and hungry for the touch of another human being.  Some one tells her about Jesus and what Jesus is preaching and about His healing power.  She makes up her mind that she is "no longer going to conform to the pattern of this world" (Romans 12:2) and instead she will do whatever it takes to touch the hem of Jesus' garment. 

She goes out into public and pushes her way through a crowded street.  Jesus was surrounded by men who were pressing up against Him from every side.  This woman fights her way through this human barrier with grit and determination even though she is supposed to avoid human contact.  And then the really cool part happens: when she touches the hem of Jesus' garment healing power automatically goes forth from Him to the woman and she is healed.  People were already touching Him from every side but healing power didn't go out to them.  Why not?  Let those who have ears hear.  The woman touched Jesus in Faith expecting something to happen.  She didn't touch Him and then wait to see if it worked.  She had already convinced herself that if she touched Him she would be healed.  Faith is what drove her to break the rules, Faith is what gave her the strength to fight through the barrier of flesh, and Faith is what healed her. And don't forget that someone told her about Jesus.  See Mark 5:21-34.

Listen to the stories of Jesus, study the Word of God, and do whatever it takes to touch the hem of Jesus' garment.  Don't be afraid to leave your pew/chair and come to the altar rail.  Don't be embarrassed to raise your hands during worship to praise God.  Get on your knees if that is what it takes to reach through the crowd to touch the hem of Jesus' garment.  Who cares what your friends or family say about you going to church, getting involved in a ministry of some type like youth group or food bank or visiting shut ins or starting up a soup kitchen, etc.  Break the rules of the hood and serve a new King and live by a new set of rules.  Be a rebel for Jesus Christ and Love people in word and deed.  The world will think you are crazy, even a loser, but that is okay because you are "no longer conforming to the pattern of this world", you are setting up a new pattern of living that will lead you into the crowded street and straight to Jesus. Tell someone about Jesus.  Maybe they are in the same boat as the woman with the issue of blood. Spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ to a hurting world.  Dare to be different.  Dare to be a Christian.

It is the best way to live.  It really is bold, exciting, fun, sacrificial, and rewarding to be a Christian.  Sure, we all know the hypocrites.  Don't be one. 

God loves you and so do I,

Pastor Bruce