You know who I want to meet in Heaven? It’s not Mother Therese. She’d be great, but I’m not sure I can relate to her super awesome saintly-ness. Pretty sure I’d be tongue tied. But this anonymous mom….this Greek Cananite woman with the demon possessed daughter? I’d like to have some heavenly chai tea with her and chat about what it feels like to lose your daughter overnight, and be so desperate you’ll beg a man you’ve never met to help you. I can relate to that.
Leaving that place, Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is suffering terribly from demon-possession.” Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.” He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.” The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said. He replied, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to their dogs.” “Yes, Lord,” she said, “but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.” Then Jesus answered, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour. (Matthew 15:22-28)
Now, I’ve been there. I’ve held my writhing daughter in my arms and cried and prayed. And gotten nothing. The next day, and the day after that was the same, or worse, and we had no answers. So we kept on praying, and kept on crying. “Lord, help me! Help my daughter!” Like this mother, I knew I didn’t deserve a miracle. My life isn’t perfect, far from it. But for my daughter, I’ll beg under the table for the crumbs of mercy. Here’s the thing. Jesus knew the woman was coming. He knew her story before she asked. So He also knew that he was going to help her and heal her daughter. So, why did he make her wait?
Why did he wait to heal my daughter, rather than miraculously healing her at the church with the elders praying over her? For that matter, why did He allow this to happen to her at all? Maybe, maybe, oh, I hate to say it…but maybe because if she had been healed in a moment that day, I wouldn’t have felt compelled to share our story with you. Maybe we went through these months of slow healing to bring hope to others in the same place. If this woman’s request had been immediately granted, like many others were, would her story have warranted a mention? But her faith, and her desperation, and her love, were so great that she didn’t give up. She kept on crying after them. So keep on crying, sisters. Don’t give up hope. Be willing to take the crumbs of healing, one by one, even if it doesn’t come in the form of one big apple pie. I’d rather have it all in crumbs on my hands and knees than be left standing with my pride and nothing to show for it. So keep on crying. He’s listening.
Details from the parallel passage in Mark 7.24-29:
Jesus left that place and went to the vicinity of Tyre. He entered a house and did not want anyone to know it; yet he could not keep his presence secret. 25 In fact, as soon as she heard about him, a woman whose little daughter was possessed by an evil spirit came and fell at his feet. 26 The woman was a Greek, born in Syrian Phoenicia. She begged Jesus to drive the demon out of her daughter. 27 “First let the children eat all they want,” he told her, “for it is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to their dogs.” 28 “Yes, Lord,” she replied, “but even the dogs under the table eat the children’s crumbs.” 29 Then he told her, “For such a reply, you may go; the demon has left your daughter.”
This blog is written by an anonymous mom. PANDAS disease is ugly. It’s practically unheard of, but it’s not rare. 1 in 200 kids has it. That’s right up there with childhood diabetes…but my pediatrician had never heard of it. This leads me to the question, how many kids out there are misdiagnosed, drugged for “behavioral issues”, OCD, schizophrenia, ADD, Autism, ADHD, Anorexic, or taken from their “bad” parents by well meaning doctors, teachers, and lawyers who don’t know about PANDAS. How many parents are searching for answers every night, in silent agony over losing their child, and have no one to talk to, no one who understands. This blog is for those parents. Those doctors. Those teachers. But mostly, it’s for those children. The ones with the fear in their eyes and the haunted look. The chapped and bloodied hands from washing incessantly. The lost childhood.
Lord, multiply this, share it with those who need it most. I don’t have time, or resources, or knowledge to get it into their hands. If it will bless them, let this reach them. In Jesus Name I pray for each hurting child. Amen.
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