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This week’s Bible reading from Mark 5:21-43 shows Jesus interacting with and bringing restoration to folks who, during Jesus’ time on earth, would have only been able to exist on the margins – or the fringe of society.
  • A woman who had been bleeding for a dozen years
  • A dead girl and her father
Jesus contact with all three of these people broke cultural and religious taboo. He wasn’t supposed to have contact with folks considered as unclean. By having contact with them he not only risked the same marginalization, he invited it.
And he restored all three.

He restored two with one miracle. When he raised Jairus’ daughter, he gave both the daughter and the father a restoration to a community that would have had to keep them on the margins.

And the woman who had been bleeding for a dozen years? I love the word play that is present in the English. The woman touched the fringe of Jesus cloak. (The tsit-tsit or (fringe) of the sleeves of a rabbi’s cloak was thought to convey God’s healing on whoever touched it) and was restored to the community after spending so many hears on the fringe.

Jesus – from the fringe – hung out with people from the fringe – and a woman was healed when she touched the fringe of Jesus’ cloak.
  • In what way to you feel pushed to the margins – or the fringe?
  • How do you think you can experience Jesus’ restoration – as you ‘reach out to the fringe of his cloak?’
  • In what way do you think you can reach out to those on the fringe with Jesus’ love?

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