(Mark 5:25-34) “And a certain woman, which had an issue of blood twelve years, (26) And had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse, (27) When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment. (28) For she said, If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole. (29) And straightway the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of that plague. (30) And Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes? (31) And his disciples said unto him, Thou seest the multitude thronging thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me? (32) And he looked round about to see her that had done this thing. (33) But the woman fearing and trembling, knowing what was done in her, came and fell down before him, and told him all the truth. (34) And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague.”
Every one of us, at one time or another in our life, have faced the harsh reality of Failure.
Whether it’s your first step as a child, your first attempt to drive a vehicle, or something that you continually have problems with — such as balancing a checkbook! or messing up a marriage — every one of us has faced Failure. An old quote says, “If you’ve never stubbed your toe, you’re probably standing still.”
Spiritually speaking however, perhaps you struggle with failing on a consistent basis; maybe you’ve failed so many times that you’ve lost count.
I realize there are a multitude of books and quotations that I could draw from about overcoming adversity and failure, but let our story — drawn from the very pages of God’s Word — show you what can happen in your life When Failure Forgets.
Look first at the background of these verses:
- Jesus was on his way to heal the daughter of Jairus.
- This woman had the odds stacked against her to begin with, she was not the object of Jesus’ attention.
Jesus was not on His way to take care of her problem; He was on His way to take care of Jairus’ daughter! Sometimes however, it’s necessary for us to get Jesus’ attention when it seems like He’s busy with everyone else. In Matt. 8:1-2, we read where one leper came and worshipped him, while the multitude simply followed Him. (Mat 8:1) “When he was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed him.” The woman in our text faced the battle of fighting a crowd who undoubtedly knew about her and her affliction. One of the most difficult battles to do is to face down those who know how often we’ve failed. But when Failure Forgets the multitude, we can reach out and touch Jesus!
The woman definitely had “issues.” This seems to be one of the “catch words” of the day. However, it doesn’t matter what you call it – problems are still problems, and failure is still failure! She was, by law, unclean. If you study the Law in Leviticus, this woman was considered unclean (impure, unholy) “all the days of the issue.” For twelve long years, this woman had been separated from everything close to her, trying desperately to find a cure. She was unable to come in contact with anything or anyone, for anything that she touched, sat on, or laid on, became polluted – because of her issue of blood.
By its very nature, sin does us the same way spiritually. It leaves us unclean, impure, unable to be cleansed by anything that we come in contact with.
We are alienated from those around us, and from the very Presence of God because of the uncleanness of our spirit. What a societal Failure this woman had become! She had “suffered many things of many physicians.” She was a guinea pig for these doctors. Undoubtedly, by traveling from one doctor to another, this woman’s story became widely known; hence, her “issue” was known to all those around her. Nothing could help her! Her only recourse after “spending all that she had” was to simply accept the fact that she was doomed to die in a state of uncleanness. What a Physical Failure this lady was! She “had spent all she had.” Not only is she not getting any better, but now she’s out of options. No doctor is going to see her; her reputation was wide-spread; she was incurable, (according to them); and now she was broke. What a Financial Failure she was now!
But when failure forgets all of these things, everything changes! Someone once said, “Failure is an invitation to have recourse to God.” You see, things start happening when Failure Forgets; When Failure Forgets, you start trying again. When Failure Forgets, you look in a new direction for the solution to your problem. When Failure Forgets, you start trying to get to Jesus. What happened in this woman’s life when failure forgot? When failure forgot that she was unclean – she broke tradition and touched His purity! When failure forgot that she was an outcast from society – she pushed through the crowd that knew about her past. When failure forgot that she’d tried everything, yet nothing had worked – she reached out yet again, and found the Answer! When failure forgot that she was in financial ruin, that she had nothing with which to buy her healing – she found her healing in the hem of His garment!
We have all faced failure of one sort or another; and I believe I can safely say that we’ve all Failed God at one time or another. However, the secret to living for God is not to never fail, but to Ask Forgiveness and Then You Need to Forget Those Failures! God did! You see, When Failure Forgets – you can put your past behind you. When Failure Forgets – you break the rules and push through the crowd. When Failure Forgets that you can’t – God can! Those who have failed miserably are often the first to see God’s formula for success. This is what happens When Failure Forgets!
Reader, do you think you’re a failure? (If not, just stop and wait.) Then forget your failure; and go to Jesus. He is waiting for you; and He is ready to give you a miracle. Just like the prodigal son came to his earthly father, go back to your Heavenly Father. He is waiting for you to come home with His arms wide open. He never left you, you left Him. Go Back.