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” – Matthew 15: 22 – 23
Most of us aren’t used to hearing much when we pray, but we might expect more of a response if we were coming before Jesus in the flesh. This wasn’t exactly the experience of a certain Canaanite woman in Matthew’s gospel though. When she came before Jesus, desperately asking Him to help her daughter, He pretty much ignored her.
From the details we are given we can safely assume that Jesus heard her but for some reason chose not to acknowledge her. She must have kept crying out, much to the frustration of the disciples, until Jesus finally acknowledged her. Silence is discouraging but how much more being told your not going to be helped because of something you have no control over (mainly because your not Jewish)? At this point many would have turned around in defeat but this woman refused to be denied.
With her most desperate request seemingly brushed off by Jesus she knelt down and likening herself to a dog, proceeded to beg (Matt 15:25 -27).Talk about dogged determination! Had Jesus been like other men the response she heard might have been something like: “Oh just go away woman! Stop begging! Don’t you know when to quit?” But Jesus was not like other men and this was exactly what she was counting on! To her importunity Jesus responded,“O woman, great is your faith!” Instantly her daughter was healed (Matthew 15:28). To others this woman was pathetic at best, more likely an annoyance and an embarrassment, but to Jesus she was a woman of great faith! Praise God for the second opinion!
It wasn’t just that this woman believed Jesus was able to heal her daughter, she believed He was willing and because she believed this she wouldn’t take no for answer! What have you been asking Jesus for? Has it felt like your desperation has been met with indifference? Don’t confuse His silence with indifference (see Ps 50:21, 2 Peter 3:9). Today is the day to sign back up and believe that He will answer! Keep asking and refuse to to be denied.
“Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son”. – John 14:13