Emotionally Crippled ….
“And, behold, there was a woman which had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bowed together, and could in no wise lift up herself. And when Jesus saw her, He called her to Him, and said unto her, Woman, thou art loosed from thine infirmity. And He laid His hands on her: and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God.”
I can remember days of feeling bowed down, unable to lift myself up ….. Laying broken on the ground, and just seeing feet as they passed …. dirt …. trash …. That was my view of the world in times past. I shuffled along with shoulders bent, head bowed, unable to look anyone in the eye, and in despair of having to face yet another day ….. I saw people, but they did not see me. They could not see me. They just passed me by shaking their heads and murmuring words of disgust …. Those memories remain and still some accompanied emotions from time to time as well. They still hurt.
When you read about this woman with the “spirit of infirmity” ~ maybe you can see more than just a character in a story; maybe you see your daughter, your sister, a friend, or perhaps even you; flesh and blood, real and revelant now, today …..
When I read this passage God reminded me once again that the women we read about in the Bible were real people; just like you and me. We must never forget that. Today, let’s look again at the woman; we read about her “spirit of infirmity”, but I believe it is a crippled back spoken of here in (Luke 13:10-17). It says when Jesus touched her she was “immediately made straight and glorified God.” To me, this means, she lifted herself up, she raised her head, her eyes saw the One who had delivered her and she glorified Him. How can we not praise Jesus when He brings new life and hope with just a touch after a life of brokenness …..
And while we might not be able to relate to being crippled physically, most of us can relate to being crippled emotionally. We see feet …. people passing by going about their busy lives. We see dirt …. the mistakes we’ve made through the years. We see trash .… the pain inflicted on us by others and many times by our own poor decisions ….
Jesus said, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.” (Matthew 11:28-29). Heavy laden is simply burdened, and my what a promise; “rest for our souls” …. Isn’t that what we all want? Aren’t we all carrying some type of burden?
Like the woman with the crippled back, we may have “a spirit of infirmity,” …. a sickness of the soul. That to me is an interesting way to explain her illness. More than just a crippled back, her spirit was crippled as well …. Our emotions can cripple us to the point that we become so bowed under the weight of carring them, and for so long, that we lose our focus and our knees become weak and feeble; we become unable to stand in our faith and we begin to falter.
There are many spirits that can cause you to walk around in a bent-over state. They might be your color, your gender, your age, your marital state, your family, or they could be abuse, injustice, resentment, oppression, despair, loneliness, anxiety, your economic state, or even a physical challenge. It makes no difference what has hurt you in the past; it makes no difference how old you were when the trauma affected your life; and it makes no difference what your wealth, position, or status is. For the evil one comes to steal, kill, and destroy (John 10:10), and each one of us is a candidate for being bent and bowed …. Just think about that statement: bent and bowed …. the weight of the world on our shoulders. Little by little …. Day by day…. Heaviness too difficult to bear. A spirit of infirmity; crippled by shame, fear, pain, disappointment, depression, poverty, insecurity, inferiority, inadequacy, and broken dreams …. Satan, the one who orchestrates the spirit of infirmity; wants to cripple us into inactivity so that our walk becomes a shuffle. Our voice becomes a whisper. Our vision becomes a blur …..
Who put the chains on this woman in the first place? Jesus said Satan had her bound (v.16). In reality, all sickness was ushered into the world when Adam and Eve believed Satan’s lie over God’s truth and ate the forbidden fruit. For the thirty-three years that Jesus walked the earth, He was in a life-and-death struggle with evil. John tells us that the reason Jesus came was to destroy the devil’s work (1 John 3:8). The battleground is the world and humans are the pawns of the evil one. Note the language, “bound” and “loosed” ….. She was held captive, held hostage if you will by that which afflicted her, but then she was loosed; in other words: Jesus set her free!! Glory hallelujah! With a touch of the Master’s hand chains are broken.
This is about much more than physical healing. It is about spiritual freedom. And when Jesus said on the cross, “It is finished,” it was. Now, because of Jesus’ victory over the enemy through His death and resurrection, we are more than conquerors through faith in Him.
Don’t miss this …. Jesus said, “Woman, thou art loosed from thine infirmity.” There are those words of hope for us again ~ we are “loosed” ~ set free!!! The words paint a picture of chains and manacles falling from a prisoner’s shackled body. Another translation says it this way, “Woman, you are released from your infirmity!” (Luke 12:13 Amplified).
In summary; the irons of oppression that held her prisoner to this crippled frame gave way and fell at Jesus’ feet as He unlocked the chains that had her bound. Jesus came to set us free and that freedom comes in many forms. Whatever Satan is using to bind you today; Jesus came to free you. Free you from … and free you to ….
I can’t say that enough. For far too long we’ve looked at freedom only in terms of what we are free from. But freedom encompasses so much more than just a shedding of chains. Jesus set us free to live the abundant life by being all that He has created us to be and accomplishing all that He has planned for us to do. Setting her straight (literally) was only the beginning for her.
Healing is a process indeed. I still have a road to travel, but I no longer bow my head as I pass a man, I no longer fear looking anyone in the eye out of shame, and I am not emotionally unavailable, for I have been redeemed. Jesus saw me, then called to me, and I answered … He set me free ….
Something to ponder: are you emotionally crippled in some area of your life? If you feel this way, I would love to pray for you. Please feel free to leave a comment or message. You can be restored and have hope for a beautiful life. Lift your eyes to Jesus …. He know and He cares about what you are going through. You are NOT alone …..
Let us pray ~
Dear Jesus, thank You for setting me free! Today, I choose to walk in that freedom and never be held captive by emotional chains again. In Your holy name, Amen …..
God is with us …. God bless you!