Here is a fictionalized account of a well-known Bible passage I wrote a while back. Let me know what you think!
The Healing of Miriam
Miriam stepped out of the physician’s office, his final words lingering in her ears. “I don’t know what else to try. I am so sorry.” Words she had heard so many times over the years.
She slowly walked down the street, absently careful to not touch others. Twelve years! Unclean and outcast for twelve years!
As she thought back to that fateful time when her monthly flow of blood did not stop, she quietly cried to God, “Why me?” Tears began to flow, but she choked them off. What good are tears? God doesn’t care.
Miriam passed a street vendor selling figs. She looked hungrily at the luscious fruit. She checked her coin pouch, knowing what she would find … yet hoping. Empty – the last copper penny used to pay the doctor.
Suddenly, she could go no further. She fell to the ground and leaned against the wall, staring at nothing.
She did know how long she sat there, when something began to intrude on her numbness. Excited voices in the street made her look up.
“You know that demon-possessed man across the lake? I heard He cast the demons into a herd of pigs! They wanted nothing to do with those demons, either. Ran right into the water and drow…”
“I was over in the city. Saw the man for myself. Going about telling everyone about …”
“Did you hear what He did earlier, over at Simon’s house? They brought old Levi to Him. Said his sins were forgiven, He did. Who would dare presume to do that? But then He told Levi to get up and walk! And sure enough, he got…”
“I hear He heals all kinds of people. And doesn’t charge them a copper. If He was smart, He could make a fortu…”
Curious, Miriam stood to see who they were talking about. She saw a couple of them pointing at a Man over at the tax office. He stepped away from the office, the tax collector on His heels. A group of men followed closely behind. They started in her direction.
A couple of other men walked up to Him. “Why do we and the Pharisees fast often, but Your disciples don’t fast?” She thought one of the men looked familiar. Isn’t that one of that prophet John’s disciples?
The Man answered, “Can the friends of the bridegroom mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them, and then they will fast.”
What a strange thing to say. You fast unto God. What is this about a bridegroom? Miriam’s thoughts swirled.
The Man turned to the crowds. “No one puts a piece of unshrunk cloth on an old garment; for the patch pulls away from the garment, and the tear is made worse. Nor do thy put new wine into old wineskins, or else the wineskins break, the wine is spilled, and the wineskins are ruined. But they put new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.”
Most people know that, if they have any sense at all. As she wondered what His point was, a man suddenly burst from the crowd and bowed at the Man’s feet. He looked quite wealthy, and she wondered why he would bow to this Man, who appeared to be of a lower class.
“My daughter has just died!” the rich man said. “But if you come and lay hands on her, she will live! Please come, Jesus.” Jesus. I have heard that name before. She could hear the desperation in the man’s voice, restoring to life her own desperate need. Once again, tears began to well up in her eyes.
“I will come.” Jesus said. The rich man gestured and started back. Jesus began to follow. Miriam could see the anticipation in the faces of the crowd. “What’s He going to do?” “Do you think He will heal her?” “Nobody can raise the dead!” ” But what if He…”
Jesus was an arms length away, and suddenly she just had to! If I could but touch the hem of his garment, maybe I will be healed. I have to try! If what they are saying is true, surely I will be healed.
She reached out, her fingertips just barely brushing His hem before He was out of reach. For a moment, a tingling went through her arm and filled her whole body.
Jesus froze in place. “Who touched Me?” He looked around.
One of the men following Him said, “There is a crowd pressing around You. What do you mean, ‘Who touched Me?'”
Jesus replied, “Someone touched Me in belief, for I felt power go out from Me.”
He looked right at Miriam. Realizing He knew, she fell at His feet. Fearful, not knowing how He would react, she haltingly explained herself under the eyes of the crowd. “I have been sick… for so long… a flow of blood…”
She looked up at His face and saw only compassion. Gaining confidence, she continued, “I thought, No need to bother Him. He is in a hurry to help that little girl. If only can can touch His garment… And when I did, I knew immediately I was healed.
“I am healed!” Tears flowed freely down her face.
Jesus reached down His hand and helped her to her feet. “Be of good cheer, Daughter. Your faith has made you well.”
Even as He spoke some men came up to the rich man, and said sadly, “Why do you bother the Teacher, Jairus. Face it. Your daughter is gone.”
Jesus overheard them and turned to Jairus. “Don’t fear. Just believe. She WILL be made well.”
They headed toward the man’s house. Excited, Miriam decided to follow and see what Jesus would do.
After a little walking, they arrived. Jairus’s house was full of mourners already, playing funeral tunes on flutes and crying loudly. Jesus said, “What’s all this commotion. The girl is not dead. She is just sleeping.”
“What are you talking about,” came from inside. “Do you mock when the parents grieve for their daughter.”
Jesus told Jairus, “Get them out of the house so I can enter.”
So the mourners came out. Someone said, “Let her go, Jairus. Just let her go.” But Jairus turned his face away and refused to listen. Miriam heard a few whispered slurs about Jesus.
As she watched, she felt a sense of anticipation in spite of the doubters around her. I was healed; And all I did was touch His garment. She watched the last person come out of the house. Then Jesus entered with a couple of His disciples and the parents of the girl.
Miriam edged closer to the doorway. She could just see the bed where the little girl lay. She looked about eleven or twelve. An attractive child, she would be a beauty when she grew up. If…
Jesus reached the side of the bed. Reaching out, He took the little girl’s hand and gently said, “Get up, little girl.” Miriam could literally see the life return to the child, as she immediately got out of bed.
“Give her something to eat.” He told the parents. He murmured a few more words she couldn’t hear, then left them to rejoice over their daughter.
Miriam rushed off to tell her family everything that had happened that day. And Jesus’s name was spread a little further.