For twelve years, she was ill.  During those years of suffering and isolation, she had endured much as she worked with physicians; her funds were gone, and she was worse not better.  Her best efforts left her fatigued, weak, and discouraged.  Finally, with her own resources exhausted, she decided to quietly move through a crowd and reach out and touch Christ’s garment.  As she touched a bit of cloth, she felt a healing power flow into her.  Wholeness.[1]

We, each of us, have an internal wound of some kind.  Henri Nouwen cautions, “Nobody escapes being wounded.  We all are wounded people, whether physically, emotionally, mentally, or spiritually.”[2]  These wounds silently even secretly bleed out life.  Quietly we too, like the woman who touched Jesus’ clothing, live with fatigue, discouragement, and exhaustion from endless longing for wholeness.  Our internal resources maybe gone; relationships broken, life less than we hoped, and still we bleed.  Today, you are invited to quietly move towards a God who still heals.   

Similar to the woman who opened this reflection, one’s wounds contain the power of separation.  A marriage breaks apart, parents turn away, or a child runs away.  To much drinking, gambling, drugs, and general avoidance keep you in your own world.  Separation lands in your life, and you wonder, “Why me.”  Am I not enough to fix my life? We are built to heal in a community of grace and love. 

Nouwen provides beautiful language around a healing event; he writes, “Only in the place of healing do we dare to show our wounds.” [3]  Where is a place of healing?  Where is it safe to show you wounds?  It is more likely with a trusted individual who creates a space where the God of all healing joins you and  offers you a place where you dare show your wounds.  Miracles are rare, but healing happens quite a lot. 

Healing invites one to separate from the crowd and seek a place of rest.  Healing, the inner healing as seen in the woman who touched the bottom edge of Jesus’ clothing, may come as one privately, without any words, steps forward into something a bit uncomfortable.  Healing shows up when two or three sit in community and grace.  Dare to step up, sneak up, or even lift up your soul to the Healer. Spiritual directors are part of the healing bits in the Body of Christ.  Come, you who are thirsty for healing, come to waters of God.  Come, you who are weary, over burdened, riddled with fear, carrying anxiety, come, and seek healing.

[1] Mark 5:24-34

[2] Henri J.M. Nouwen, The Wounded Healer.

[3] Henri J.M. Nouwen, The Way of the Heart: The Spirituality of the Desert Fathers and Mothers.

Illustration used by permission from artist Wayne Pascall. View his collection at