“That’s true, Lord,
but even dogs are allowed to eat the scraps
that fall beneath their masters’ table.”
(Matthew 15:27 NLT)
What’s it in?
What do you believe so deeply, so surely in that it’s as much a part of you as your arm or leg?
What do you believe so deeply in that, no matter the opposition, your very soul holds your ground?
There’s a woman who’s talked about in the Bible that leaves an EPIC legacy of conviction. This woman gives me chills and inspires me. When I think of strength, she is one of the first images that comes to mind. She takes conviction beyond conviction… she calls it FAITH.
Jesus came to her town. She was quite a bit lower on the totem pole [socially] than Jesus but still she boldly approaches him for a favor. Her daughter needed healing. Her daughter was possessed by demons that “tormented her severely.” (Mt. 15:22) In response, the disciples tell Jesus to send her away. Then, even Jesus gives her request pushback. Yet she keeps on. And on. And on. She and Jesus go back and forth like swordsmen and she doesn’t budge an inch until he gives her what she asks for.
21 Then Jesus left Galilee and went north to the region of Tyre and Sidon. 22 A Gentile woman who lived there came to him, pleading, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David! For my daughter is possessed by a demon that torments her severely.” 23 But Jesus gave her no reply, not even a word. Then his disciples urged him to send her away. “Tell her to go away,” they said. “She is bothering us with all her begging.” 24 Then Jesus said to the woman, “I was sent only to help God’s lost sheep—the people of Israel.” 25 But she came and worshiped him, pleading again, “Lord, help me!” 26 Jesus responded, “It isn’t right to take food from the children and throw it to the dogs.” 27 She replied, “That’s true, Lord, but even dogs are allowed to eat the scraps that fall beneath their masters’ table.” 28 “Dear woman,” Jesus said to her, “your faith is great. Your request is granted.” And her daughter was instantly healed. (Matthew 15:21-28 NLT)
I dug a little deeper to see what experts say might have been Jesus’ reason for pushing her in this way. Matthew Henry puts it this way:
“Christ treated her thus, to try her; he knows what is in the heart, knew the strength of her faith, and how well able she was, by his grace, to break through such discouragements; he therefore met her with them, that the trial of her faith might be found unto praise, and honour, and glory, 1 Pt. 1:6, 1 Pt. 1:7 . This was like God’s tempting Abraham (Gen. 22:1 ), like the angel’s wrestling with Jacob, only to put him upon wrestling, Gen. 32:24 . Many of the methods of Christ’s providence, and especially of his grace, in dealing with his people, which are dark and perplexing, may be explained with the key of this story, which is for that end left upon record, to teach us that there may be love in his face, and to encourage us, therefore, though he slay us, yet to trust in him.” (Matthew Henry Commentary on Matthew chapter 15)
He knew the strength of her faith and was able to challenge her into demonstrating that though he slay us, yet to trust in him.
Though he slay us, yet to trust in him.
And she did.
Do I? Where do I push past my comfort zone to a place that only faith can carry me? What would my life look like if I got to that place every single day?
Dear Lord, I LOVE this account. I love how you took a woman of deep strength and conviction and let her example live on as one to follow. I love that you know just how far our faith will take us and you push us to believe beyond a place of comfort. You push us to believe beyond conviction. You push us to grow our strength. Though you slay me, I will trust in you. Amen.
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