And behold, a Canaanite woman from that region came out and was crying, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David; my daughter is severely oppressed by a demon.” But he did not answer her a word. And his disciples came and begged him, saying, “Send her away, for she is crying out after us.” Matthew 15:22-23
It was not unusual for Jesus to be met with requests and cries for help in his ministry. Everywhere he went, people were asking him questions or begging him for healing. This journey into Tyre and Sidon is no different. Jesus is faced with two requests: “Send her away!” and “Help me!” The disciples’ request is pretty straightforward: “Send her away, for she is crying out after us.” She is only a Canaanite woman, from a region that has consistently stood against God. In their minds Jesus, the Messiah sent to deliver Israel, would have every right to ignore her cries.
The woman’s request is much more desperate than the disciples’: “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David; my daughter is severely oppressed by a demon.” She must have known how big of a risk she was taking by asking a Jewish rabbi, the Messiah, to heal her child. Good Jewish men don’t talk to gentile women, but even with the odds stacked against her she dares to cry out. How many times have you come to Jesus like this woman? She’s in a position of need and dependency, even desperation. And at first, Jesus says nothing.
What are you crying out for that Jesus hasn’t responded to? Are you willing to stick around and wait? If you are feeling like the Canaanite woman today, crying out to Jesus and waiting for him to respond, take time to listen to “Trust in You” by Lauren Daigle. May it be an encouragement to you as you anticipate an answer.
By Jessica Rust