Prayer: Listening God, when it seems we aren't getting the answers right away, help us to remember to be patient and persistent. Amen
Reading: Matthew 15: (10-20), 21-28 (Click to read text)
Stop and GROW: After reading the text, discuss/ponder the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's Book of Faith questions, which are part of Camp Mount Luther's GROW Time with campers.
QUESTION 1: What scares, confuses, challenges, or doesn’t make sense to me in this text?
QUESTION 2: What delights me in this text or is my favorite part of the story?
QUESTION 3: What stories or memories does this text stir in me?
QUESTION 4: What is God up to in this text?
Reflection: There are times when it just looks like Jesus is holding off an answering or doing something when being asked. In this story, it seems at first he isn't even listening to the Canaanite women but surely he is hearing her pleas for help. The disciples are hearing her and their response is to ask Jesus to send her away. But he doesn't and after a bit more persistance, the woman's daughter is healed.
Patience and persistance pays off, they say. That’s easier said than done. But the Canaanite woman knew who Jesus was and what he could do. She did not give up regardless of being brushed aside at first. It would have been easy for her to think maybe this Jesus person isn't all they say he is but she did not waver in her trust in his power. In the end, Jesus acknowledged her faith and told her what she wished for was done. Imagine her arriving back home to find her daughter well! --Ruth Gates
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