Getting Well

Getting Well

“If I only touch his garment, I will be made well.” Jesus turned, and seeing her he said, “Take heart, daughter; your faith has made you well.” Matthew 9:21-22

With addiction, the term eye-opener refers to a drink or drug taken in the morning to combat withdrawal or treat a hangover. Overnight, the high wears off and the dependent body and brain begin to get sick in its absence. The eye-opener then, is necessary to arrest the withdrawal symptoms and to get well.

I’ve been there. I once needed pills to sleep, then I needed them to get well and wake up. Because life often required me to be sober, I was in perpetual misery and withdrawal, always looking forward to a few hours or days off, when I could get well. In the sickness of my addiction, I desperately needed recovery, but my hunger for the pill ruled all.

In today’s passage, Matthew tells of a truly sick woman who sought to get well the right way. This unfortunate woman had suffered from vaginal bleeding for 12 years, making her an unclean outcast. In humility, she didn’t ask Jesus for anything, she simply scraped together the courage to touch his garment, believing that would be enough. It was. As she touched Jesus, he turned and uttered the words she desperately needed to hear, Your faith has made you well.

The interesting thing is that Jesus made it clear that it was the woman’s faith – which in this case was synonymous with touching Christ – that triggered the healing. The power unmistakably came from God, but it was the woman reaching out that unleashed Jesus’ power.

This is the lesson of the story. It is only in faith – in doing whatever it takes to seek Christ – that we truly get well. In addiction, whether it’s to food, drugs, money, or lust, we turn to immediate gratification to feel good, which inevitably leads to remorse, pain, and more withdrawal. It’s only in abandoning our own path and following something greater than ourselves, that we find freedom, recovery, and joy.

If we, like the woman in the story, really want freedom and healing, then daily, we must do whatever it takes to make contact with God. This will often mean that we make radical changes, abandoning the old life, but truly getting well, is more than worth the trade.



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