The Healing Touch
God created us with this very amazing gift of touch. Our touch is so amazing, in fact, that it heals. Our touch has senses and memory. It heals us in every aspect, emotional, spiritual and physical. Touch is so divine and so powerful that we cannot even begin to fathom it. It is so blatantly there, yet so very hidden from us. Healing, loving and ministry in just one touch of our hand…can you imagine the power in a hug?
I am going to reflect on the book of Mark. The writer who gives us details and beautiful visuals of Jesus and His ministry. I will point out touch through the entire book and Jesus with His example of touch. The single greatest and most beautiful sense on our body. One that is vastly taken for granted. One of the greatest gifts that we don’t even realize we have.
(Mark 1.:31 So he went to her, took her hand and helped her up. The fever left her and she began to wait on them.)
So he went to her….this verse brings tears to my eyes. It is so simple and graceful, but the single most profound sense of touch and healing. No discussion or fuss. No elaborate healing techniques, just a simple taking of the hand and helping her up. He goes to her. He takes her hand and helps her up, touch. The fever leaves her, healing. She begins to wait on them, ministry. Even if the fever did not leave her, the mere fact of his gentle grace…going to her, touching her hand….brought her life! She stood up.
We begin to realize that sitting in agreement with the illness can succumb to us. But, even greater, not touching someone for fear or ignorance, and even disgust can further cause them to succumb to illness.
(Mark 1: 40–42 A man with leprosy came to him and begged him on his knees, “If you are willing, you can make me clean.” Jesus was indignant. He reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing” he said. “Be clean” Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cleansed.)
I can just imagine this man begging. He had succumbed to his illness. Teased and taunted to the point of feeling largely like a victim. After an entire day of being there for others, healing and drawing out demons, Jesus in his flesh, must have been just exhausted to the point of frustration. We have all been there. The scripture states that Jesus was “indignant”. He was insulted or annoyed. However, Jesus reached out his hand and simply touched him. Saying, he was willing. Willing. Tired, exhausted and appearing annoyed…he still reached out. In doing that the man was healed and there was ministry. No matter how disgusting in appearance or annoying in behavior, every person deserves to have that touch.
There comes a time when we will have to reach out and touch others for healing. We have done all that we can. Said all the prayers and remained in steadfast hope. Those around us have become so busy in their life and focused on their journey that they will unintentionally start to pass us by. The noise of an overwhelming schedule in others lives becomes louder than our cry for intimacy. It is during these times when we, the broken, must reach out and touch others for our own healing. This act alone can be extremely strengthening and healing. It becomes a journey of breaking free from the bondage of isolation.
(Mark 5:27–30 When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering. At once Jesus realized that the power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”)
Seriously! Jesus knew who touched him and why. He asked her to bring out the strength in her. The willingness to come forward and be accountable for the need to be healed. ALL she had to do was reach out to him in faith, to touch his clothing. It is important to recognize that Jesus stopped and asked. He was in a busy crowd, touched by so many. Hounded by others for attention. But, her humility, her faith, her strength and her confidence to reach out for touch superseded all of that. He stopped everything for her. Often we will have to really check ourselves and our lives and listen for that tug from others with the understanding that their journey was first reaching out to us. When we deny that growth and healing, we are denying ourselves the divine touch that lives within us.
Then there are those who cannot express their need for touch. They are so broken they have no idea that there is healing available. It is others who see it and will need to express the need for the broken.
(Mark 7:32–35 …some people brought to him a man who was deaf and could hardly talk, and they begged Jesus to place his hand on him…Jesus put his fingers into the man’s ears. Then he spit and touched the man’s tongue…At this, the man’s ears were opened, his tongue was loosened and he began to speak plainly.)
There will be a time when we will either have to listen to others or be the person to express for another. Jesus stuck his finger in the ear of the man AND he spit on his tongue. This is completely symbolic of taking a very uncomfortable part of ourselves and touching another in that uncomfortableness. The truth is, they are sometimes so unaware, so broken in all areas, they do not even know nor care that you are touching them with such awkward attention. They only care that they are healed in touch. The healing and the ministry in the touch will forever superseded the awkward process to get there.
Lastly, there will be times when we need never stop touching. Some people will need that consistent healing touch. Do not give up on them.
(Mark 8:22–25 …Once more Jesus put his hands on the man’s eyes. Then his eyes were opened, his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly.)
Here we come to a story that people begged Jesus to heal, he took his spit to heal, the man couldn’t completely see, Jesus then put his hands over his eyes and the man finally had restored sight. The ministry is in the gathering of the broken. Taking time and sometimes needing more than once to heal through touch.
Jesus taught us by example through miracle after miracle that the healing is in the touch. Reading through each chapter I begin to realize that it was not soley based on the miracle in the healing. It was the manner in which the healing took place. Healing in the simple touch, the touch without words or big deal. The willing touch, the touch when you just don’t feel like it. The take time out touch, sensing when others really need your touch and taking the time to stop and give it. The awkward touch, when others bring your attention to touch someone because they don’t know it exists. And, the consistent touch, sometimes its going to take more than one touch to heal. Touch. Divine. Taking all the time out to just make a single gesture can not only heal someone, but lead them into ministry. Walking, leaping and praising. The miracle is not in the healing. It is in the touch.
Stay tuned for part II, The Intimate Touch.
Growing intimate with Jesus touch. Falling in love with Him through tangible love. He who is in you and your partner. Coming together in the most beautiful, loving and intimate encounter from one single touch.