A Hand Up

Jesus healed so many when he was on this earth, but there is one story that stands out to me after celebrating Easter. It’s the story of the raising of Jairus’s daughter found in Mark 5:21-43. For those of you who don’t know the story, Jesus was approached in a large crowd by Jairus, a synagogue leader, an important man in the community. This man was so desperate, he threw himself at Jesus’s feet even in this packed setting. The crowd must have parted for such a display. He explained his daughter was gravely ill and begged Jesus to come and heal her, something Jesus was now famous for. Jesus was willing, but the crowd made his leaving slow going. I imagine Him wading through a sea of grabby hands. Everyone wanted a piece of His power. According to the text, He healed a woman in transit, someone with so much faith that she tugged on his cloak and the power left Him, freeing her from 12 years of pain and suffering. Not one to heal and run, Jesus addressed her, but even this brief encounter was too long for Jairus and his daughter. As Jesus finished up with her, others arrived with the sad news that Jairus’s daughter had succumbed to her illness. They urged Jairus not to “bother” the teacher anymore. Jesus, overhearing the conversation, assured Jairus it was no bother and told him not to be afraid, which I find curious. I, of course, looked up the synonyms for the word “afraid”, because I associate this word with being frightened and it didn’t seem to fit this situation. Discouraged, disheartened, disturbed, anxious, upset, were all words one could use in its place. “Don’t be rattled,” Jesus said (my paraphrase). “I’ve got this. I’ve got you.”img_4194

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A White Christmas?

I’m dreaming of a dry Christmas

Just like the ones I’ve rarely known

Where the trees are bare

And children stare

And cry because there isn’t any snow

I’m dreaming of a dry Christmas

With every trip I take outside

May your days feel more like July

And may all your Christmases be dry

Snow. I’m not a fan. Sure, it’s very pretty at times, even dreamy, when it’s wafting down slowly in flakes the size of feathers, forming a crystalline blanket of softness on surfaces. It shushes things. Traffic lessens, as a slippery sheen is laid down. People stay inside. They cocoon, wrapping themselves in wooly sweaters and self-administering hot liquids. They’re content to look at the snow like one looks at snowfall-16319_1920fish in a fish tank. It’s rather mesmerizing to watch the world fade to white and familiar forms, like vehicles, obscure to fluffy mounds. Unfortunately, snow’s beauty is fleeting. Try travelling in the open country in a blizzard where you can’t see 2 feet in front of your vehicle and, I guarantee, you won’t be so enamored with it. For a day, fresh and pure, it’s enchanting, but, as the winter drags on, driven snow clumped with salt, sand, and gravel is ugly, especially when the sticky stuff sticks around for months. Soon enough, most people can hardly stand the sight of it. Continue reading “A White Christmas?”