I will be the first to admit. I am NOT a patient person, especially when it comes to issues that require “solving” or things that may shake my world. We’ve all gotten that email, phone call or text at some point that throws you into a crisis of some type, be it work, friend or family centered. My natural inclination is to go into get’er done mode and work to solve or mitigate the crisis as much as possible on my own, shutting out much of the rest of the world while I tend to that crisis. How do you react to a crisis?
In going through the miracles of Jesus at church, a statement resonated with me that our pastor shared. It come from the story of the miracle of healing Jairus’ daughter after Jesus had crossed the Sea of Galilee (read Mark 5:21-43 for the full story). The crisis… Jairus’ daughter was on her death bed, and knowing that Jesus could heal her, approached Jesus within a large crowd, begging Jesus to go with him to lay hands on her. If you had the power to heal a young child from impending death, wouldn’t you hurry to do so without stopping, entering “crisis” mode? That’s where it gets interesting…
Jesus is not hurried or anxious during crisis.
With a great crowd pressing in around Jesus, He was still aware that something had happened when the woman touched his garment. Jesus chose to stop and help the woman with a crisis of her own.
And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well;
go in peace, and be healed of your disease.” Mark 5:34 (ESV)
Jesus made the contact personal by calling her “daughter”, and affirmed that her faith had healed her because she believed He would. He then sent her off, no longer unclean or to be considered an outcast. And Jesus continued on and healed Jairus’ daughter – in His timing.
There are three points that this story makes me step back and think about…
1. I think of how I handle crises and if I put off other people at their time of need because of something I deem a crisis (big or small) in my life when something might be as profound as to help another in their need. What opportunities are we missing in crisis mode to minister to others that may need us more than our crisis needs us?
2. It also makes me think back to the training a few weeks ago in Dallas and how I jumped to making decisions without slowing down because of the crisis (even for a split second) and thinking things through, especially tools I had just learned that I should have put into action. Our instructors kept repeating that we need to be thinkers before doers. It highlights that we should always think before we act (or speak) in anything we do, or we may regret our actions or words.
3. Finally, we are at our most vulnerable (physically and emotionally) when we are in crisis. It narrows our focus and attention from full awareness around us. Some crises require that focus, especially severe ones (death, sickness, etc..), and when that kind of crisis is in your life Shepherdess, you need to surround yourself physically with members of your flock that can watch your back to keep you safe, but also be your arms and feet to hold you up in a time where you may not be able to stand alone.
By yourself you’re unprotected. With a friend you can face the worst.
Can you round up a third? A three-stranded rope isn’t easily snapped.
Ecclesiastes 4:12 (MSG)
Shepherdess, tend your flock well, and in times of crisis, allow them to tend to you!