We can see the miraculous touch of Jesus on display throughout the gospel. How an encounter with him would change everything — in an instant. Lepers, blind men, the bleeding woman, they were completely transformed by a touch. John described Jesus like this:
In him was life, and the life was the light of men.
— John 1:4
It’s made very clear who Jesus is in the first chapter of John: He is “the Word,” “the true light,” “the only Son,” and he is God. But John also reminds us in verse 4 that, in addition to all these things, his very essence is life. So it should come as no shock that, when people came in contact with Jesus, they received life. He is the source! His entire time on earth was a picture of life overcoming death, light chasing out darkness. This is what John is alluding to. So it makes sense that the woman tugging on his cloak (Mark 5:27) would receive healing out of the overflow of that essence. She had faith in Jesus’ ability to give life, and that’s exactly what he did.
Now look at another short passage in the gospels, one of my favorites:
Now they were bringing even infants to him that he might touch them. And when the disciples saw it, they rebuked them. But Jesus called them to him, saying, “Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.”
Not only does this passage give us a beautiful picture of faith and how to receive the kingdom of God, but it gives a glimpse of Jesus’ heart.
The disciples saw all these people shoving their little children toward Jesus as a major nuisance. Frankly, the whole idea of Jesus touching them seemed insignificant. They’re babies and toddlers; they’re just kids! But Jesus scolded his companions. “Do not hinder them,” he commanded, for there are none too small for Jesus to make time for. His heart, our Creator’s heart, is to touch those that the world, even the very religious, might consider insignificant. Isn’t that wonderful?
There have been many times in my life that I’ve found myself thinking, “God, I’m a lost cause.” Or “why would you waste your time on someone like me? I’m just going to mess up again.” Have you ever thought something like that? But I thank the Lord that he doesn’t look at it like that. He is the spring of abundant grace. And, just like those little children (who the disciples thought were a waste of time) or the unclean woman desperately reaching out for Jesus, we too can receive life, if we will simply ask — with the faith of a child.