I’ve read this passage in Matthew 15 many times before, but never did I come to understand it in quite the way that I recently did as on the day when God opened my eyes and ears to seeing and hearing it through a new lens, in a way that ministered to a hurting mother’s heart. My prayer for you is that God would open the eyes of your heart too as you read this scripture, and that you’d also be blessed with a double blessing, one for you and one for your child. Before you continue on, stop for a moment and ask Him to do this for you, because it’s only through His power that we are able to see things that we never saw before and to know that “nothing will be impossible….” (Matthew 17:20 NIV).
The Faith of a Canaanite Woman
21 Leaving that place, Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. 22 A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is demon-possessed and suffering terribly.”
23 Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.”
24 He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.”
25 The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said.
26 He replied, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.”
27 “Yes it is, Lord,” she said. “Even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their master’s table.”
28 Then Jesus said to her, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed at that moment.
Did you notice how the mother came to Jesus seeking healing for her daughter? She wasn’t looking for anything for herself, yet did you see how she referred to Jesus? She called him “Lord” and “Son of David,” although being a Canaanite woman, a woman who was not a Jew, an outsider, so to speak. Jesus even said to her that he was sent to the lost sheep of Israel, not to the Gentiles, and the disciples even urged him to send her away. No one wanted to be bothered with her. Yet this mother persisted. She said that she’d be willing to take only the scraps because she believed in the power of the Lord and professed to know him as the Messiah, the Son of David. Look at how many of Jesus’ own wouldn’t even claim to recognize him as the long-awaited Savior, and here was someone from “outside the fold” wanting to taste perhaps just a crumb if Jesus would be willing to share. And it was that kind of hunger for the Lord that caused Jesus to do a 180 and not only heal the woman’s daughter but bless this woman with a gift of her own that day ~ the gift of eternal salvation.
Talk about a “two-fer.” (A “two-fer” ~ better known as “two-fer the price of one”). I don’t know about you, but I was completely blown away when the Lord opened my eyes to this new insight from an old Bible story I’d heard time and again, and it gave this Re-stARTist fresh hope for times of suffering, especially in my role as a mother. Not that I’m looking forward to experiencing adverse events with my child, but to know that as a mother, the suffering of my child can lead to my greatest blessing? Who else but God could orchestrate something like that?
May you be blessed as you meditate on His power and greatness today, and may your faith, even as small as a mustard seed, continue to blossom and grow.