A Persistent Mother

Categories: Motherhood


Shep, did you hear about a mother who loved her child so much that she argued with Jesus?


No, I don't know that story. Why would she argue with Jesus?


Jesus needed some time alone to teach his disciples. Since he was so famous, they all went to another village where he might not be recognized. A Gentile woman heard Jesus was in town. Her daughter was very ill and she knew Jesus could heal her.


What's a Gentile?


Gentiles weren't Jewish. They had different religious beliefs, like Jews and Christians today. And the two groups didn't mix – in fact, there were laws that kept them apart.


Did that make a difference to Jesus?


No, Jesus just loved everyone. But it was a custom in that region to test people.




To make sure they really wanted what they were asking for. So Jesus explained that he was sent to the lost children of Israel, not to the Gentiles. He told the woman that it wasn't right to give food to the dogs.


Wow, that doesn't sound like Jesus. Why would he say that?


Remember, I said he was testing her. The Jews used to call Gentiles dogs. He was just testing to see whether or not she was sincere about healing her daughter.


Whew – that's tough! I just can't imagine Jesus would call her a dog.


He didn't call her a dog; he was using this as an example. She was so alert that she could see that Jesus wasn't being mean. So she told him that even the dogs ate the crumbs from the master's table.


All she wanted was a crumb?


That's right. It was her way of saying that just a crumb would be enough to heal her child. Jesus was so touched by her faith that he healed her daughter instantly.


There's a lot to learn from this healing, isn't there?


Yes! For instance, mothers are persistent when their children need help. Nothing was going to stop this woman from finding a way to make her daughter well. And Jesus loved so deeply that he was willing to help anyone who needed healing.


And Jesus just wanted to be sure the Mother truly wanted healing for her child.


He also taught his disciples a great lesson: everyone is worthy of healing.


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