What was your favorite game as a kid? When I was a kid I really loved to play hide and seek. You remember begin a little kid and finding that secret spot where no one could find you? As an adult we get better at hiding and our secrets more difficult to be found. No one might know you have been struggling with an eating disorder because of a poor self-image, cutting to stop the other pains in your life, bathing your eyes with pornography or abusing substances to drown out the noises and pressures you feel.
Have you ever noticed how little-little kids play hide and seek? They want you to find them. In fact, when you sneak around the room saying, “Where are you?” They say, “Over here!” They do not get the fact yet that you are suppose to stay quiet and not be found. They have childlike innocence. We need to be more like those little-little kids with God. Uncovering our sin, before He covers it. Wanting to be founds and saying, “I am here!”
We see an example of this in the book of Mark [5:25-26]. Except it is not a kid, but an older woman. Can you picture the scene? There is a loud noise from the crowd. Everybody wants to talk, touch and tweet with Jesus. In the midst of the crowd Jesus has an interesting encounter with a woman hiding in the crowd who desired to change.
This woman had been hemorrhaging for 12 years. Women, think of it as a 12 year straight period. In the Jewish culture she would be considered unclean. Therefore, she would have been rejected religiously, socially and more. Maybe you can relate to this woman. I know I have at times. You feel like you are hemorrhaging with sinful habits, bad decisions, secret junk and no one can help. You are just a face in the crowd.
What can we do when we are in a situation like that? We can learn a lot from the example of the woman in this text:
1. Quit Trying to Change on Your Own [5:27-28]. This woman came to the ropes end. She is rejected, spent and tried it all, and failed. We often make attempts to make drastic changes in our lives only to fall flat on our face. Discouragement creeps in and we no longer make any attempts to change.
There are numerous ways people try to change their secret sin struggles: money, self-help, work, medicate, recruit others to sympathize with you or ignore it all together. None of these permanently deal with the problem, rather they just deal with the symptoms, not the problem, bring others into sin with you, and create bigger and harder issues to deal with later. Without realizing it you have become a puppet and these so called easy fixes are like the puppeteer controlling your life. The truth is: if you do not kill the sin, sin will kill you.
This woman had no promise that Jesus would heal. Maybe He would reject too. Many think that God cannot change them. So they keep themselves covered by concealing their sins. We are professional concealers. Think of all the household items you own that conceal [ie. White Out, table cloth, make-up, bandaid, etc.]. Are you a professional concealer? Don’t conceal, deal with sin by allowing God to heal it.
2. Fight through the Crowd to Find Christ [5:29-32]. The woman is desperate to change. She fights through the crowd. She swims against the current of those who reject her. Decisions of faith are often a fight. Faith goes against the norm. Faith is often the opposite message you hear from friends, culture or school. I remember when put my faith in Christ it was an all-in-and-no-looking-back leap.
It is not that Jesus didn’t know who touch Him; rather he wanted to recognize the woman. Sometimes we think that if we uncover our sin to God that He will humiliate us, when He really wants to honor us in front of the crowd.
3. Confess your Sin and Be Free [5:33-34]. Pride is what usually prevents us from falling before the feet of Jesus. Humble yourself and uncover your sin and let Christ free you from the guilt and shame of secret sin. Face your fear by falling at the feet of the one who wants to heal you permanently.
Quit playing your childish games and be like the little-little kid that wants to be found, “I am here!”
Hide no more in your sin. Seek the protection of your God. “You are a hiding place for me; you preserve me from trouble; you surround me with shouts of deliverance. I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you.” Psalm 32:7-8