One day Jesus and His disciples were traveling to Tyre when a Gentile woman began to follow them. She was begging Jesus for help. Her daughter was demon possessed and she knew that Jesus was the only one who could help. The woman was not the kind of person the disciples wanted to be seen with so they urged Jesus to send her away. Because she bothered them!
As I read this story I was reminded of when I served as the pastor of different churches. Sometimes people who did not fit in would come to worship with us. Some of these people had bad hygiene; others had emotional issues or maybe addictions that they could not overcome. These people had needs that only Jesus could meet, but they were not the kind of people we wanted to be around. Often as the pastor I would hear insinuations that we should send these people away because they bothered the congregation.
The sad truth is we who are church people like to surround ourselves with other people who look, act and sound just like us. Since we have been commanded to love our neighbors, we try to make sure that our neighbors are people that we want to love. We do not like to have people in our midst who scare us or challenge us or make us uncomfortable. So we hope that these people will just go away because they bother us.
I have some good news. Good news for us good Christian church people who have needs that we keep hidden, because we do not want to bother anyone. Good news also for those who don’t fit into the church because their needs bother the people of the church. This good news is found in Psalms 145:18-19, it says “The LORD is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth. He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him; He also will hear their cry and save them.”
The gentile woman bothered the disciples so they wanted Jesus to send her away. But Jesus would not do that. Instead He allowed her to exercise her great faith. Then he met her need and He healed her daughter.
Today you have a need that only Jesus can fill. People may try to turn you away, because you bother them. But you don’t bother Jesus, have faith in Him, keep calling out to Him and I promise you Jesus will not send you away.
From Down Where the Pavement Ends