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Know God in a Year #122 Learning Acceptance

After the confrontation in Capernaum, Jesus takes his disciples to the hills bordering Phoenicia for the rest he had hoped for on the north shore.

But more importantly, he is putting himself in the path of a Greek Canaanite woman who is seeking him for her possessed daughter–creating another template for his disciples of God’s all-inclusive love. They think he is too free in healing those outside of Israel. But he wants to teach them that God hates prejudice. His love sees all men as equals, no matter their country or social standing.

This discouraged, heart-broken mother has heard of the teacher who heals everything imaginable. Hope revives and she determines to take her need to Jesus.

Recognizing him on the road, she falls down, “Lord, have mercy on me, my daughter is tormented by a devil.”

Jesus pretends not to hear her, giving the typical response of the religious leaders at home for benefit of his disciples.

She continues to ask and the disciples say, “Send her away!”

Jesus stops; addressing her, “Let the children eat their fill; it is not right to take the children’s bread and throw it to their dogs.”

Not discouraged, she sees a compassion he cannot hide, and answers, “Yes, Lord, but even the dogs get the crumbs that fall from the master’s table.”

Jesus’ response is full of grateful joy, as if he’s been holding his breath–praying for her, hoping she wouldn’t give up, “O woman, great is your faith! Your daughter is well. Go and see!”

Matthew 15:21-28   Mark 7:24-30

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