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"Reaching out for Jesus' clothes" by Elaine Sinnott (CatholicMom.com) Image credit: By Erica Viana (2019), Unsplash.com, CC0/PD[/caption] Is it possible to reach out for Jesus' clothes today just like the hemorrhaging woman did 2,000 years ago?

Physical Contact with Jesus Accompanied by Faith

There was a woman afflicted with hemorrhages for twelve years. She had suffered greatly at the hands of many doctors and had spent all that she had. Yet she was not helped but only grew worse. She had heard about Jesus and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak. She said, “If I but touch his clothes, I shall be cured.” Immediately her flow of blood dried up. She felt in her body that she was healed of her affliction. Jesus, aware at once that power had gone out from him, turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who has touched my clothes?” But his disciples said to him, “You see how the crowd is pressing upon you, and yet you ask, ‘Who touched me?’” And he looked around to see who had done it. The woman, realizing what had happened to her, approached in fear and trembling. She fell down before Jesus and told him the whole truth. He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has saved you. Go in peace and be cured of your affliction.” (Mark 5:25-34, emphasis mine)
The notes for verse 28 in my Bible say: “in the case of the hemorrhage victim, the inner conviction that physical contact (Mark 5:30) accompanied by faith in Jesus’ saving power could effect a cure was rewarded."

Reaching for Jesus Today

Don’t you wish you could do that today, my dear friends? Reach out and physically touch Jesus’ clothes in the midst of your intense grief over the loss of a loved one, perhaps a parent, a spouse, or your very own child? Don’t you wish you could reach out to His clothes in the midst of suffocating anxiety because you can’t seem to get ahead, no matter how hard you try? Don’t you wish you could reach out in the midst of chronic pain or illness? Or in the middle of the anger of infertility? Or in the middle of the fear that lingers because of childhood abuse? Jesus tells us if we believe, we shall receive! (Matthew 21:22) Just like this hemorrhaging woman believed and received. The faith in her words in the passage above showed no hesitation. She touched His clothes with expectant faith.

The Jesus Tour

Don’t you wish you knew where Jesus was going to be taking a stroll in this world so you could book a flight, pack, and prepare yourself to stand in the crowd just like that hemorrhaging woman? And maybe even gather up enough courage just to touch his clothes and know this act of faith will heal you? My dear friends, did you know you CAN still do this today? This is available for everyone. Jesus is just as physically present with us today as He was to the hemorrhaging woman 2,000 years ago. You can still stand in His physical presence with expectant faith. You can still reach out and touch his physical clothes, believing you can be healed. You can still physically experience His gaze upon you. And you can gaze back into the eyes of Love Himself.

A Personal Experience

I experienced this unforgettable physical contact with the Lord on the Blessed Is She retreat in Annapolis, MD this past October. I had an incredibly powerful healing experience but the personal experience with Jesus that weekend was even more remarkable. Saturday night, the last day of the retreat, we entered into the church for Mass. After Mass, Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament began which is when a piece of the consecrated bread that is now Jesus’ Body (John 6) is placed in a gold monstrance and the church becomes quiet. We sit there and adore the Lord as He adores us right back in a peaceful stillness that drowns out the world. It’s a beautifully safe place to be with all of our worries, sorrows, and fears. We hear Him tell us we don’t need to carry them anymore because He wants to hold them for us. There is no better place to unload our hearts than at the physical feet of our Lord.

Touching Jesus' Clothes

Then, the quiet but powerful worship music began. And the priest wrapped the monstrance in a linen hanging all around each side and walked through the pews, stopping and looking at each individual woman in that church. I had never experienced a Eucharistic procession before but my heart was about to experience Love Himself and how personal His love was for me even among the 300+ women in there with me. As the priest moved through the aisles, quiet sniffles and cries began. Each woman was starting to experience the Lord in an unbelievably personal way. Then, I watched women start to reach out for the linen wrapped around the monstrance as our Lord stopped in front of them. Suddenly I realized what I was going to experience -- a chance to walk in the same shoes as the hemorrhaging woman.

Feeling His Loving Gaze

When the priest finally reached the back row where we were sitting, I couldn’t even wait for Him to get right in front of me. I reached my arm over one of my friends who was there with me to grab the linen, to grab “His clothes”! I grabbed it harder than I probably should have, too, as everyone else seemed to be gentle. But it was a desire I can’t explain.

My soul recognized Him!

I want to cry just thinking about it again. It was an overwhelming feeling of love. I was crying and couldn’t stop. Words can't capture what my heart felt in that moment.  I felt His personal love for me. I felt Him looking back at me.  The King of my heart, the lover of my soul, was right in front of me, holding me as I cried into His shoulder, releasing everything I had been trying to carry on my own.

A Heavy Sadness

As I was in the midst of this powerful encounter, my heart was simultaneously bursting with joy yet heavy with sadness. I was so thankful to be there in the intimate, physical presence of our Lord, but I felt equally as sad as I thought about all of the people -- my family, my friends, and people I don't even know -- who don't know they can experience this, too.

The Lord has given us so much more than most of the world realizes, even more than most Christians realize!

After Jesus ascended into Heaven, He granted to all those who seek Him the gift of receiving Him in the Eucharist. All of these loved ones running through my mind made my heart ache. They are missing out on the most heavenly encounter Jesus gifted us with before He ascended into heaven. It is the closest to heaven we'd ever be here on earth and far too little people know about it.

He Wants to Gaze Upon You, Too!

He died on the Cross to make this experience with Him available to us today! My dear friends, the Lord wants you to experience this, too. I don't want you to be missing out on this anymore! We were not made to carry all of these burdens on our shoulders by ourselves! We were made for heaven. We were made for Him. No wonder that experience fed my soul -- I was closer to my heavenly home in front of Lord gazing upon me than anywhere else on this earth. It was there I found healing. I found relief. I could finally take a deep breath. And I found absolute true Love Himself. It has been on my heart to share this incredible news with you for almost a month now, but it has taken me a while to find the words. Jesus wants you to know this Love is also for you. This personal, one-on-one among millions, love is for you. You can truly sit in His physical presence in Adoration and feel His gaze upon you and feel His incredibly raw and real love for you. He wants you to experience a Eucharistic procession, too, where you can look up and see the King of the Universe staring at YOU while you reach out for His clothes with expectant faith! Dear friends, will you allow Him to love you the way He died to love you?
Copyright 2020 Elaine Sinnott