As we reflect on this year I think we all can agree that we have seen some strange things from the government being in chaos to family dysfunction. Sickness, death, frustration and if we be honest for just a moment some of us have asked the question God what is going on? What are you up to in all of this mess? How do we properly understand the loss, the dysfunction, and the lack? Needless to say that when the clock turns 12:00 the New Year rings in but the problems are still there. How do we come to grips with the reality of our present situation but yet still maintain that God is still good?
The woman who is one of the main characters in our scripture had seen twelve New Year’s but yet still had the same problem. She had a condition that did not end when the New Year came but it persisted despite her going to the doctors, despite her persistence her problem did not go away. Many of us are fooled to believe that a new year will wipe away old problems. That is not true because Jesus told us that in this world we will have tribulations but He also gave us hope “He said be of good cheer because I have overcome the world.” Meaning we are going to have some problems but rest assure that greater resides in us so we do not have to fret because in the end we win.
Year after year this woman did the same thing over and over again so what changed this year? I believe her mind changed, she decided to do something different. Mark 5:26-27 gives us a clearer picture of the events. She tried the doctors, she spent all of her money nothing worked for her, it wasn’t until she changed her mind to try Jesus that her situation changed. May I share with you that you will not see a change in your problem until you change your mind. The bible tells us in Romans to be transformed by the renewing of our minds. That word renewing is continuous, daily. We cannot expect new things when we are stuck in cycles of failure. Cycles start in your mind.
If we are going to break cycles of failure we must stay in the press. When I say the press I am talking about being persistent to chase after God. The Greek work for press is “apothlibo” it means to press on all sides, squeeze, press hard. Like pressing out grapes and olives. In this new year I want you to press hard into the presence of God, squeeze on him just like this woman and crowd around her. The pressed on Jesus until they got what they needed.
Here are a couple of points I want to leave with you.
- Stay close to God. Deepen your relationship with God. Fast more, pray more, read and study more, in this season you will need and rely God has never before. This woman had to realize that she tried everything else the only way to break this cycle was to get close to God.
- Train your ear to hear God clearly and then do what He says. Mark 5:27 tell us “she heard about Jesus.” You can no longer rely on yourself to make decisions. If you want to see change and learn how to deal with issues you need your ear glued to the mouth of God. “Lean not to your own understanding but acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.” No longer can we afford to operate in our flesh. Our flesh is emotional, flesh is fickle it is not a good indicator of reality. We have to rely on Holy Spirit if we are going to see change in our lives. If she had not followed the leading of her ear she would have still been bleeding. But she heard and she followed. Whatever God tells you to do that even if it is strange to others do it.
- Despite the naysayers press forward: The woman was unclean and embarrassed but she pressed forward. No doubt if she had told anyone they would have stopped her from going after her healing because it didn’t make sense. There were so many people pressing him, seeking His attention, how will he notice her? May I share with you that a touch of faith could not be hidden from Jesus. So because of her faith the physician quickly saw the patient and she was healed.
Family I want you to know that there is great reward in your obedience. Your faith will be tested but press forward, the crowd may be large but press forward; you may feel non-existent but continue to press. Your healing is in your press; breakthrough is in your press. God knows your touch, He knows the sound of your voice, he knows the softness of your skin, and he knows your tears from anyone else’s. He knows what you are going through, He cares, and He is coming to your rescue. In this New Year you have to do something different. Change your thinking, stay close to God, hear is instructions and do what He tells you to do. Stay in the press.
Scripture: LUKE 8:43-48