Jesus often saw more faith and spiritual hunger in pagans than he did in his own people. A case in point is the Canaanite woman who implored him to heal her daughter “suffering terribly from demon-possession.” (Matthew 15:22) NIV
You would think that he would jump at the chance to prove himself to someone who was open to him, especially when the Jewish leaders were rejecting him and his message. Instead, he ignored her, but finally said something that from our perspective sounds pretty rude. “’I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.’” In other words “I’ve got the goods but you can’t have any.”
The woman refused the offense and kept begging. When Jesus told her “’It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to their dogs’” she had a comeback that finally hit the mark. She would take crumbs! She said; “Yes, Lord, but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.”
The outcome? “And her daughter was healed from that very hour.” There are times when desperation gives birth to faith, and faith bears results. That’s our lesson. How rarely we are in such a desperate condition that we don’t care if we are refused at first, but we keep pressing, and won’t take no for an answer.
Jesus is not ignoring us so much as he is waiting to see if our condition will push us to desperation, and our desperation will shove us to faith. Are you desperate yet?
Well, he’s waiting….