“From there Jesus took a trip to Tyre and Sidon. They had hardly arrived when a Canaanite woman came down from the hills and pleaded, ‘Mercy, Master, Son of David! My daughter is cruelly afflicted by an evil spirit.’ Jesus ignored her. The disciples came and complained, ‘Now she’s bothering us. Would you please take care of her? She’s driving us crazy.’” –Matthew 15:21-23 (The Message)
Lexi bothers the neighbors. She must. Although we steer clear of oncoming pedestrians and bicycles, cross the road to avoid other dogs, and circumvent small children, she still occasionally barks, growls, and lunges. Everyone in the neighborhood surely recognizes her, like I recognize other dogs. I worry everyone thinks of her as “that awful Rottweiler.” I feel apologetic just walking down the street. But I have to walk her. Heaven knows she can’t play at the dog park! This must be how the Canaanite woman felt when Jesus came to Tyre. She probably worried about bothering Jesus, but she had to get some help. At first Jesus ignored her, scripture says, but she persisted, to the point that the disciples complained. Then Jesus saw that she had real faith, and he healed her daughter (v. 28). Maybe we worry about bothering Jesus with our petitions and prayers. But if we gave up hoping, we wouldn’t be walking in faith. And we have to walk with God.
Dear God, Teach me to keep walking even when I worry that I’m bothering you. Amen