“ A woman in the crowd had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding. She had suffered a great deal from many doctors, and over the years she had spent everything she had to pay them, but she had gotten no better. In fact, she had gotten worse.” – Mark 5 25-26. (TPT)
When we are finished talking to somebody, we would typically say “goodbye” or “see you soon” or “later dude,” or some other phrase you are comfortable using. If you were Jewish, you would simply say, “Shalom” —” Peace!” The word peace occurs 429 times in the Bible.
The woman in Mark 5 did not have peace for 12 years. In first-century religious law, there were serious regulations concerning hemorrhaging. The laws of bleeding not only made the woman herself unclean but whatever and whoever she touched also became unclean. The result was embarrassment, isolation, and religious stigma.
This woman had sought the advice of rabbis and doctors, to no avail. They could provide her with no peace. Only God could have done for her what Jesus did. Jesus said to her in compassion, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace. Your suffering is over.” (Mark 5:34)
Where can we find this shalom? Only in Christ, the Wonderful Counselor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, and the Prince of Peace will we find this. Come to Him today and listen to Him, say to you, “son, daughter—go in shalom.” But shalom is something we need to strive for.
God never intended for there to be so much strife because of race. God created each race and gave them a unique identity. God wants us to learn to accept each other and love each other.
We need to think to hear and act on what Jesus says. The church needs to do its part. It makes no sense to go to church all day and sing songs about God and raise our hands in worship, and yet we are not concerned about the injustice that faces the everyday life of people of color. We can start by modeling Romans 12:15 and “mourn with those who mourn.” Then without defensiveness, without counter-argument, and without self-justification, white Christians need to listen to our black brothers and sisters: and then make any changes we need to make to be a catalyst to bring a new era of justice and tolerance, love and shalom to our community and our nation.
Only God can change the human heart — and He will, as we, each one of us, open our lives to the power and love He has shown us in Christ.
- How can we better come together in a spirit of shalom?