She was sick but she knew she had to hasten her steps if she wanted to catch up with the crowd, catch up with the man in front of the crowd. They were moving. No one would wait for her. Bigger than her sickness however was the one ahead of her. How was she going to get through the crowd to the man she knew had her healing? She looked ahead. Everywhere was jammed and there was no way she could even squeeze herself through. She had caught up with the crowd, though her target was still far front. Then, she heard the shout of another ‘No’, followed by a commotion.
The word reverberated through the crowd and in an instant, heads turned. Who had said it, no one knew but the cause of the exclamation soon dawned on everyone.
There, in a distance was the woman who had no name. As usual, she was filthy, stained and the look registered on the faces that had turned towards her spoke one voice – Rejection. Despite that, she made her way forward still…painfully but very determined, believing in her heart that everything will be fine.
‘She’s here’, ‘she’s coming’, People were shouting. Each man trying to protect his own skin. Nobody wanted to have contact with the woman who had no name but she wouldn’t stop coming. That, they were sure of, so to avoid skin contact as they desired, they knew they had to go for the only option left. They had to clear the way for her to pass.
* * *
Now, hold on a bit.
Just in case you missed it, the story I just told above is the legendary, biblical story of the woman with the issue of blood. Over the last couple of days, I’ve found new things worthy of being shared from her story.
–First, Oxford’s definition of the term ‘Challenge’ is wrong. Denotatively, ‘Challenge’ is synonymous with ‘trials, problems, tests, etc’ and it is defined as ‘a situation that tests someone…”.
However, the woman who had no name has taught me through her story that “Problems and Challenges are only opportunities if one chooses to see them as such.” They are paving stones, inevitable in every story of a turnaround, just like the word ‘testimony’ would never be complete without the first four letters.
I often wondered how the woman with the issue of blood got through the crowd, close enough to touch the hem of Jesus’ garment. Now, I know.
Everyone must have been irritated by her. They must have considered her worse than a leper and wouldn’t want physical contact with her.
So, when they saw her coming, pressing, they had no choice but to clear the way for her. Her ‘challenge’ got her through.
–Second, she taught me the lesson of not living my life based on public opinion. She was messed up, poor and rejected. Then, she heard Jesus was passing and she dared. I’m sure the people must have shouted at her to go back but that was public opinion and she didn’t care. She knew, Jesus, the man who she had business with would not reject her and in this knowledge, she pressed on. Getting through to her breakthrough at the end.
–Finally, she taught me not to follow the conventional. Prior to her story, nobody else had ever thought it right to touch Jesus for healing but somehow, she decided to break protocol, go against the conventional and do something out of the ordinary. She didn’t even have to touch Him, she only touched the hem of His garment and through that single, unusual act, the woman who had no name got her story into the world’s most famous book of records and guess what? Subsequent testimonies, as recorded in the Bible came through touching. The woman who had no name blazed the trail.
I can’t stop smiling. Ooh, how I am glad that she had a challenge. Now, I see challenges as synonymous to ‘Opportunities, adventures and
the likes.’ And like I would always say, “Whatever you are passing through is only constituting contents to the chapters of your life. Without it, your story book would not be so voluminous.”
So, smile at challenges, face them and just like the woman who had no name, you can as well be rest assured that they are only for better
Written by: Seun Olagunju