Wednesday, November 6, 2013

A desperate mother...

November is here and I added the Thanksgiving decorations to the Fall decorations.  I love the history behind the holiday.  We were blessed to be able to take our girls to Plimoth Plantation in Cape Cod, Massachusetts when they were younger after reading The Light and the Glory, the true story of the small band of people who followed God's leading to the new land across the Atlantic.  They made major sacrifices so their families could have freedom to worship God.  If you ever get a chance to go, it is an eye-opening experience. 

Did you know that at one point during their first winter their food consisted of five kernels of corn each day?  The next spring, the nearby Wampanoag Indians taught them how to plant crops in the new land and showed them what was available as game to shoot or catch to feed their families.  The Pilgrims and these Indians enjoyed a good working relationship and the Pilgrims wanted to express their thanks to God and the Wampanoags by having a feast - thus Thanksgiving was born.

Many books picture the Pilgrims as stern religious people who only wore black and white.  But, in reality, they loved color.  Their clothes were colorful as were many pieces of furniture.  They also loved to sing and dance.  Doesn't sound very stern to me!

Jesus Cared About Women

There is a story in Matthew 15 about a Canaanite woman who approached Jesus.  She was desperate to get help for her daughter. 

Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David.  My daughter is cruelly demon-possessed.

This mother loved her daughter and was so desperate for relief for her that she approached this famous Jewish rabbi and begged Him for mercy. She had obviously heard of the miraculous healings He had performed.  That's what she wanted for her daughter and was desperate enough to be bold enough to take a chance that He would hear her and heal her daughter.

Jesus' disciples were offended that she would even approach Jesus and demanded that He send her away. Jesus told them something that seemed to infer that He agreed with them.  I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.  But, I really think He was just trying to get the disciples to think outside the box.

The desperate mother approached Jesus and bowed down before Him.  Lord, help me!  Can you imagine the tears running down her cheeks.  If He wouldn't help her, there was nothing else she could do.  Jesus tested her by His answer to her.

It is not good to take the children's bread and throw it to the dogs.

She boldly answered, Yes, Lord, but even the dogs feed on the crumbs which fall from their master's table.  She knew she had no claim on His help, but desperate mothers do and say desperate things.

Jesus could have refused to help her, but He didn't.  At that point, He didn't see her as a Canaanite but as a woman who recognized Him for who He was. 

O woman, your faith is great; be it done for you as you wish.

And her daughter was immediately healed!

Do you ever see yourself as unworthy to ask God for help?  The key is not in our ability to be the right person or to ask in the right way.  The key is in knowing who He is - not just positionally, but relationally.  Do you know Him?