One of the scariest moments I’ve ever experienced was standing in the middle of Paris on Bastille Day. I was packed, shoulder to shoulder with one million people like…well like one million people smushed together.
One spooked tourist moving quickly and many would be trampled to death.
Reporting on that day, CNN didn’t see individuals. It saw a crowd.
But Jesus doesn’t see crowds.
Jesus saw me in the middle of Paris, His beloved child who has blue eyes, and is a little goofy, and is afraid of being left out and gets impatient easily.
I wonder if the woman in Mark 5 felt the same way. Was she afraid of being trampled? Or just afraid of being overlooked by Jesus and a crowd with more important priorities? Was it hot and dusty? Was she perspiring with hope?
Monday Jesus let Jairus, a synagogue ruler interrupt Him, but he was a man, and an important man. What about someone like you or me, who’s just…ordinary? Jesus is heading to Jairus’ house when He gets interrupted again.
A large crowd followed and pressed around him. 25 And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. 26 She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse.27 When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, 28 because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” 29 Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering.
30 At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”
31 “You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’ ”
32 But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. 33 Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. 34 He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”
The woman was a distraction to Jesus, but He moved slowly enough through the crowd to notice and respond to her as an individual too.
I love it that Jesus saw the woman who touched Him, and Zaccheus in the tree, and blind Bartimaeus waiting by the roadside…The unimportant folks like you and me.
He sees you, and you are oh so precious to Him. Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing.
In the middle of a crowd or all alone in your room.
A discipline I sometimes try is to stand at the edge of a crowd, or on a balcony and just look. Look for anyone who is standing alone or looking uncomfortable and then go to them.
When we truly see and value others, maybe it’s a small reminder that Jesus does too.