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Today’s Truth

“Do you want to get well?”

John 5:6

Friend to Friend

I love the story of Jesus healing the woman who had been bleeding for twelve years. It’s hard for us twenty-first century women to imagine such a condition lasting for so long. Medical science has progressed far beyond the rudimentary knowledge of Jesus’ day. It is simply unthinkable today.

But I suggest there are still many women with chronic bleeding of a different sort. We bleed from the heart.

From the time Sarah was six-years-old, her stepfather crept into her bedroom in the dark of night and violated her little body. Now, as an adult, her heart bleeds.

When Beth was walking to her dorm room from the college library, lurkers jumped from behind the bushes, dragged her to a nearby shed and raped her at knifepoint. Now, ten years later, her heart bleeds.

After twenty-years of marriage, Lucy accidentally stumbled upon a hotel receipt in her husband’s wallet. Suspecting the worse, she uncovered past e-mails, supposed meetings that never occurred and a trail of deceit. When presented with the evidence, her husband admitted having a three-year long affair. And her heart bleeds.

Margaret’s routine physical reveals that she has AIDS. She had only been with one man her entire life…her husband. And her heart bleeds.

Laura was laid off from her job and her mother’s words re-emerge like sewage leakage from an underground septic tank. “You’re no good. You’ll never amount to anything. You’re a loser just like your father.” And because of the lies, her heart bleeds.

Melissa holds her newborn little girl in her arms and coos her to sleep. Interrupting the sweetness of the wee hours of the morning, she hears her aborted child crying from the grave. Guilt presses down as the ever-present weight deflates her joy. And her heart bleeds.

Women—hoping the pain will go away. Awakening each day with a memory that cuts a fresh wound. Women—longing to hear the words “Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”

The woman with the issue of blood was no different from you and me. While her apparent illness was physical, her inward suffering ruled her life. But in one radical moment, one momentous decision, she reached out to Jesus and grabbed hold of her healing.

He wants to set us free from our suffering, but he will not push us out of the cell. He unlocks the jail cell, but we must walk out the door. We can choose to bleed. We can choose to remain in our suffering and pick at the scabs of the past. But hear me dear friend, it is a choice. Jesus said, “I have come that they might have life and have it to the full” (John 10:10). That’s what He wants for each of us. But we have to embrace the truth and, like the woman with the twelve-year-bleeding, reach for our healing.

In John, chapter five, Jesus encounters a lame man sitting by a pool of water where the paralyzed, blind, and afflicted gathered. They believed that when supposed angels stirred the waters, the first one in the pool would be healed. For thirty-eight years this man sat in his sickness.

Then Jesus walked up to him and asked a strange question, “Do you want to get well?” (John 5:6b).

Perhaps it was not such a strange question after all. Many times we get used to being sick and wear it like a shroud. Emotionally we are the walking wounded – victims who pick as scabs – not allowing them to heal. That was me for thirty-eight years, until Jesus asked me the same question.

Jesus said to the woman, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.” That is the same emotional healing he offers to you and to me.

Let’s Pray

Dear God, I am sick and tired of being sick and tired. I reach forward today, touch the hem of Your garment, and receive my healing. Yes, I want to get well. Give me the faith to walk in freedom and victory.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen

Now It’s Your Turn

Is there emotional pain in your life that you have refused to let go of?

Do you want to get well?

That is a risky question. It took a lot for the man to get up off of that pallet. He had to learn how to walk, get a job, and learn to live like a healthy person. That’s a big change after 38 years. But you can do it! You can let go of the past and begin to live in victory and freedom! Let’s start today!

More from the Girlfriends

Today’s devotion was taken from my book, How Jesus Broke the Rules to Set You Free: A Woman’s Walk in Power and Purpose. In this book we study each woman Jesus encountered in the New Testament and see how her story is your story. Jesus came to set women free! In a day when they moved about as shadows in the culture, rarely seen and seldom heard, Jesus broke the cultural rules to heal them, save them, and then send them. He risked His reputation to save theirs…and yours. The book comes with a study guide and is perfect for women’s Bible study groups. But be prepared, you’ll fall in-love with Jesus all over again. Click on the book to watch the book trailer. That is a blessing in its self!

6 Responses to “When the Soul Bleeds”

  1. Cindy says:

    This article really hit home for me. Exactly what I was feeling this week tired of feeling emotional and sad felt like I had been missing all the beautiful blessings around me . Time to put the past behind me . Thank you for this article. I thank God that he is always near and ready to heal us if only we let him
    Cindy

  2. Judy says:

    Thanks for sharing. I try to read the devotionals early to have a good day. Your sharing made my day. There was so much that you shared that related to me. Have a blessed day.

  3. RHONDA says:

    This really was an eye opener. I have been praying for healing in my marriage for over 21 years and healing in my body from going through Cancer and side effects for almost 6 years. I know God healed me completely. But I continued to walk in sickness. When I needed to grab hold of JESUS and walk in my healing. Sometimes are answers to our healing and prayers are right in front us but we don’t grab hold of them and continue to live in the illness and hurt. No more today is a New Beginning a New Start and time to walk in the healing God has giving me

  4. Lynne says:

    Sharon,
    Thank you for this devotional today. God has brought me to this story about the bleeding woman and the blind man many times this past year – in fact I have taught these stories myself recently. And the truths behind them penetrate my heart.

    I am the woman, who was not raised in a Christian home,who did not marry a Christian man, and who was not saved until she was 36 years old. I am the woman who although very deeply in love and faithful to her husband of 33 years, became deeply infatuated and enamored by her pastor. I am the woman who stared intently at her pastor as he preached each Sunday, wondering to herself, who would I be today if I had married a godly man like that. I am the woman whose pastor asked her to “come see him sometime if I ever had any needs”. And I am the woman who has not been spoken to or looked at by her pastor or his wife since that very day, close to 5 years now.I have been avoided in every possible way.

    I am the woman who risked everything and confessed her sins to God, her husband, her pastor and his wife. I got on my knees and begged forgiveness. Only to be told that no one had avoided me – that this was my guilt producing these wrong perceptions. I am the woman that has been told that perhaps I have a chemical imbalance in my brain due to menopause, or perhaps I just care too much what others think. I have tried everything possible to be made right (not just swept under the rug) with God’s people (in a private way, not public)because I truly believed that broken people could come together and genuine healing could take place.

    I love the Lord, I love His Word, and I have cried out to Him for years asking Him to take away my bitterness, to help me forget that I looked at a man of God, preaching God’s Word, in the house of God, with God’s people and God’s spirit in me -I looked at that man with lust – not of the flesh, but because I longed for what God never intended me to have, a godly man (husband or father). Nobody hates what I did more than me!Nobody except perhaps God!

    I know that in my heart God has forgiven me, my husband has & I’m sure my pastor and his wife have as well, but the pain is ever so present. The consequences are always present – an extremely awkward relationship with my preacher. And Satan uses my shame against me every day he can. I thought in humbling myself, admitting my sin fully (in spite of loosing my integrity and reputation), that I would feel forgiven and healed.

    The healing comes for a short time, but then the bitterness, anger & resentment returns. Please pray for me. I want to walk out of the cage of pain forever and never return again, but I just don’t seem to be able to get there.

    And it’s difficult to feel reconciled with others when the problem is never acknowledged. Please pray that I can move forward. I am serving God, and God has gifted me in many ways that His glory might be shown. God has used others to encourage me without them even knowing.

    I love the GIG devotionals, and I pass them along to my daughters everyday. Thank you for making yourself available for God to work through you. Your efforts are not in vain.

    From a sister in Christ Jesus that desires complete healing, thank you!

  5. I was amazed at the title of this. I must be in a similar frame of mind as you Sharon, I wrote a blog post I’d to share. Thanks for the wonderful posts on GIGS. https://adaughtersgiftoflove.wordpress.com/2017/06/26/you-have-to-bleed/

  6. Sister T says:

    I actually cried when I read this. My heart feels such an ache like these women. I am one of them. I understand being Molested, Raped, Labeled, Unborn Children that echo their cries and screams in my heart (and mind), Judged “guilty”…morally convicted. Mistakes that haunt me now. The wounds that bleed from my soul from mistakes and choices i made. To the loss of innocence robbed of me. I look at so many happy “families”. The Children and Grandchildren that surround “mom” and “dad” ..and i know..its now too late for me. Time simply ran out. I never imagined being almost 50 yrs old, and i never wore the white wedding gown. I never “risked’ my heart. So scared of being hurt. Perhaps rejection has played a role in my life. I was too pretty once. Then ? i was too ugly. And now?, I’m simply too damaged to “Trust” a man. So I, walk through life all alone now with one of the most hidden and shattered bleeding hearts you or anyone could ever imagine. My tears ? (when i cried?) were the kind that should have been colored blood red…for they were tears of such hidden depths. Far beneath my skin, to where the heart pumps my blood. THERE…is where the pain..drips from. A river of tears i can no longer shed. I look at myself in the mirror and see ..very little of my former self. I just see an older woman..battered and beaten, with a very bleeding wound in her heart..and spirit. When the spirit bleeds, there is no other pain to compare. Its something..indescribable. So, I undertand these women. I happen to be “her”!!

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