Summary: God’s time is always the best time, even if it does not seem so to us.
Have you ever heard the saying, “Life is what happens when you’re making other plans”? You know, often we kind of have things all mapped out, what we want, what we plan to do, and then life happens and our course is changed. Or sometimes, if we are so bent on what we have mapped out, never looking up, life can just pass us by, or overwhelms us. And if we truly live and experience life, we soon discover we can’t control life, that it never goes quite as planned, there are a lot of surprises along the way. Well that is kinda what happens to Jesus in this story. He has his course mapped out, plans to go heal Jarius’ daughter. Then life happens. The woman with the hemorrhage comes in and his plans get changed a bit. He has to pause on his way to the healing to take care of this woman who suffered from hemorrhages for twelve years. She had been to doctor after doctor and none of them could do a thing for her. In fact as time went on she grew worse. Now you or I would automatically think of the physical consequences of such an ailment. The chronic fatigue from loss of blood and low iron. The constant threat of infections due to diminished circulation. But there were spiritual and social consequences of her particular ailment.
As a Jew she was considered unclean because of her bleeding. She was segregated from all that was holy in order to keep her from defiling it with her uncleanness. No man would have her for a wife because she was unclean. So as long as the bleeding continued she was socially isolated. As long as she was unclean she was told by the religious authorities that she was unfit to worship God. So she was suffering, not just physically, but socially and spiritually as well.
Then after twelve long years of this Jesus came by and she was healed. Why did it take Jesus 12 years to show up and heal her? For twelve years she suffered the indignity and isolation not to mention the physical discomfort of her condition! Why did God let her suffer for so long? You would think that the Son of God would have better timing than that! It would be logical to think that it would have been better if Jesus had arrived 11 years, 11 months and 3 weeks earlier and saved her years of pain and anguish. Wasn’t Jesus just a little late? No! The Bible tells us that this woman had heard of Jesus and that she took it upon herself to touch his cloak so that she could be healed. And when you think about it, this was a bold act. She was unclean. What would people say? What would they do if she touched the Holy Rabbi? He might rebuke her. The crowd might stone her. But she reached out to Jesus anyway. This was a desperate act of faith by a desperate woman. Jesus was not late. He was right on time. God’s time (KAIROS). If Jesus had come any earlier she would not have been ready to take the chance she took. She would not have been ready to make that leap of faith. To take a chance on further ridicule and death on the belief that Jesus could heal her. When Jesus found her he said, "Your faith has made you well." Because Jesus came when he did and not a day sooner this woman was able to step out in faith. And because she stepped out in faith she was healed.
Meanwhile, the second person in our story, Jarius, was waiting. Jesus had been on a mission to Jarius’ house to heal his daughter when the woman with the hemorrhage disturbed the “plan”. And one can almost sense the impatience and anxiety Jarius must have been going through during this time. Anyone who has ever had a sick child…no matter how old or young the child may be… knows how a parents heart aches when a child is sick. And Jairus daughter was sick, even to the point of dying. Jairus had heard of this new teacher named Jesus who healed the sick. So as fast as he could he ran to find this Jesus. Even though leaders of the Synagogue were not supposed to believe in charismatic prophets like Jesus; even though it would look bad on his social resume to be seen with Jesus, he went.
When he found Jesus he pleaded for Jesus to come quickly or his daughter would die. Jesus agreed to see her and they took off down the road. But then, when Jairus looked back Jesus was just standing there with the crowd. We can almost hear him thinking, “What was with this Jesus. He says someone touched him! Of course someone touched him there must be a hundred people here. I don’t care who touched him my daughter is dying.” I imagine in desperation Jairus may have even grabbed one of the disciples by the collar and said, "You light a fire under that teacher of yours and get him moving or my daughter is going to die!" But before they could get Jesus moving again Jairus’ friends arrived with the news. "Your daughter is dead. Don’t bother with this rabbi any more. Its too late." One can imagine the rage that welled up in Jairus. "I am a leader in the synagogue and this would-be rabbi wastes his time on some unclean woman. If he had just come when I told him to, she wouldn’t be dead now!" But before Jairus could put his rage into words Jesus reached out to him and said, "Do not fear, only believe." The mourners must have thought, "Why is Jesus coming? He is too late to heal the girl." But Jesus took the girl’s hand and said, "Little girl, get up!" And she stood up and began to walk and they were all amazed.