The Gospel reading for today is really the story of two miracles arranged by Mark in such a way to teach us something about the nature of faith. A man approaches Jesus and asks Him to come and cure his child who is very sick probably close to death. We then shift to another healing miracle where Jesus heals a woman who has had a haemorrhage for the last twelve years! We then return to the original story and Jesus raises the girl from the dead. What can we learn from all of this?

The first thing to notice is that the man who approaches Jesus concerning his daughter must have been a man of faith – he believes that Jesus can heal his daughter. Now Mark inserts another healing story to demonstrate the strength of this man’s faith. The woman with the haemorrhage believes that to touch the cloak of Jesus will be sufficient for her healing. Here Mark informs us that our healing is dependent upon the power of Jesus. The woman does nothing of herself but believe and make some sort of contact with Jesus. It is not necessary to meet Him face to face – probably to be in the presence of Jesus is sufficient!

The faith of the woman is indicative of the faith of the man who asks for the healing of his daughter. That is, they both demonstrate the same level of faith in order to have their pleas attended to by Jesus. Furthermore, Jesus, when speaking to the man, tells him that faith is all He asks of him. All that Jesus asks from us is that we will have the faith to believe that he can heal us in answer to our prayers.

Thus, when we approach Him in prayer, we must do so with the faith of both the woman and the man in today’s Gospel. It is not any power that we have that can bring about healing, but it is our faith and trust in the power of God that is sufficient to heal all of our ills. Jesus has total authority over every situation in our lives. The question is, “Do you believe this? Do you have sufficient faith to trust that this is true?” These questions are no mere idle musings but are critical to the welfare of our faith and spiritual journey. Without faith in God we can do nothing. With faith, all things become possible because it is the power of God at work in us and not just our own strength.

How strong is your faith? Have you taken the step to entrust your life wholly into the hands of God?

Jesus, you are Lord of all. Thank you for the way that you constantly call me into your presence and enlighten me with your Spirit. Grant me the gift of faith so that I may deepen in my walk with you and grow daily in my trust in you.