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  1. Pastor Drew


    9/9 – Mark 7:24-37


    (SIGN) – I would like to share with you how Jesus helped two people with great needs.
    (SPEAK) You’re probably thinking a couple of things – mostly likely, “the pastor has something up his sleeve…” But I’m thinking that many of you felt a bit uneasy. Not sure what I was saying. Sometimes we get that un-easyness when we have something that we’re unsure about. Even when you are facing a large need. Nervous…unsure…I’m sure that we have all felt way. Especially in a time of need.


    Does anybody in this room have a need in your life? Most everyone here has several important needs. I would go a step farther and say that most people here have one or more major needs in their lives and some may not see how that need can be met.

    Some people could be facing devastating family problems. Maybe financial difficulty, or even a difficulty with their child. Some see their own souls and they realize that they’re lost. Some face a disease and wonder what lies ahead. Some are looking at their parents and realizing they won’t be here forever. I could stand here all day and not exhaust the list of problems that many of you are facing today. All the while feeling worried and unsure of how things will go.

    In the midst of all of the problems, we need someone to help us. We need someone to turn to for a solution.
    This morning, I’m here to tell you that we need God to work in our lives. You don’t need Him to lift every burden, just the heaviest. You don’t need Him to move every mountain, just the highest. You don’t need God to give you the whole loaf, just a crumb.

    By the way, I signed – (SIGN AND SPEAK) I would like to share with you how Jesus helped two people with great needs.

    3. SCRIPTURE – MARK 7:24-37

    Those are the situations we find in scripture this morning. Jesus finds himself traveling to the region of Tyre, an area where the Jewish people do not go. He doesn’t want anyone to know he’s there. He is approached by a mother who is in a desperate situation. She needs something in her life. She comes to the Lord and as she does, she is not asking for the whole meal — she’s not asking for everything wrong to be made right — she is just asking for the crumbs. She’s asking Jesus to move in her situation.

    In verses 25-27, this woman goes to Jesus, and explains that her daughter who was posessed by an impure spirit. She fell at his feet, and begged for the spirit to be driven away.

    And he responds, “First let the children eat all they want, “for it is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.” Sounds like Jesus was being a bit harsh, but look at where he was. He was in an area where he didn’t want to be noticed – A place where the Jews despised, and wanted no part of – But yet, this woman comes to him. She has several counts against her. She is the wrong gender. In biblical times, the men were the ones in charge. She was the wrong race – She was Greek and brought up in Syrian Phoenecia, and the wrong religion to approach Jesus – She was a Gentile. On top of that, she has a daughter who is demon possessed. Perhaps her courage comes from the fact that she is approaching Jesus, not for her own sake, but for the sake of her child.
    In their conversation, Jesus says that the children be fed first — the children are a reference to the people of Israel, and the dogs are everyone else. And she says, “Lord, even the dogs under the table eat the children’s crumbs.” She doesn’t want all of her difficulties solved…just one, and she’s asking for just one crumb. For her reply, Jesus heals the child.

    He then goes to the region of the Decapolis, and a deaf gentile man is brought to him. The people there begged for Jesus to heal him. Again, these people didn’t bring all of their troubles, but just this one. Jesus then took him aside, placed his fingers in his ears spit and then touched his tongue, saying “Ephphatha…Be opened. His ears were opened and his tongue released.
    Perhaps, in the eyes of Jesus, these Gentiles showed more faith than the religious leaders back in Israel. And again from our scripture from last week, it shows us those who are truly “clean” – not those who look good on the outside, but those who have a heart full of faith on the inside, even though they may not be a part of our group, or a group that we would be comfortable around.

    4. Aaron Barg – A Life LIVED

    In a 2004 article in Christianity Today, Bob Smetana shares the story of Aaron Barg. When Aaron was three months old, a hernia left him in almost constant pain. His parents, Steve and Susan Barg, said finding a surgeon who could repair the hernia was easy, but finding an anesthesiologist was almost impossible.

    Thanks to a rare genetic disorder called Trisomy 13, Aaron was born with a weakened heart and lungs and an undeveloped brain. On top of all that, he was deaf and legally blind. Doctors told the Barg’s that Aaron would most likely die within a year. If he survived beyond that time frame, his life would have little quality—he’d never speak, walk, or feed himself.

    For most anesthesiologists, the risk was too high. They felt any operation could kill Aaron.
    After several attempts, Susan Barg finally asked an anesthesiologist if he would like to hold Aaron. He did so for a full hour, and only then did he agree to assist in an operation. Since then, the same anesthesiologist has helped in several more operations for Aaron.

    “He holds Aaron, and he becomes a human being,” Barg says. “Not a statistic, not a piece of medical research on a piece of paper—but a human being with a name who responds to touch and cuddling and love.”

    Against all odds, Aaron grew into his teens and became a handsome boy with blond hair and a face that lit up when anyone he knew came by. If you bent down by his wheelchair, he would pull your face close to his, stare deeply into your eyes and stroke your face. Though he couldn’t speak, his eyes and hands told you that he knew you were there. And he far exceeded all expectations! He could move his wheelchair, feed himself, and even communicate using five hand signals. After this 2004 story, Aaron lived another five years, and passed away at the age of 18. A young man, only expected to live a few months after his birth, inspired not only the Illinois congregation that has come to know him, but countless of others around the country as well. Aaron lived to the age of 18 – he was still in a wheelchair, and he was still deaf and legally blind, but thanks to one anesthesiologist who saw him as a loving child, Aaron lifted others through love.


    When Jenny and I first got married, we moved to an apartment complex outside of Pittsburgh, and went swimming. There was an area church group there that prayed for our daughter Emily. She was deaf, and they prayed for healing. Because she wasn’t healed then and there, they blamed our unbelief for her not to hear. As any parents, we were both angry – but God gave us a crumb. The encouragement for both of us to learn to sign – to find out more about the world that she lived in. It helped us to go into a world that some don’t know, but should. We raised an incredible young woman who will be the first to tell you that she can do anything that anyone else can do – she just can’t hear. But more importantly, we also learned to lean on God when we have our heaviest burdens. We don’t ask for every single one to be lifted, but when we face them, he’s ready to lighten our load. And God is there for each and every one of us for the same purpose.


    Perhaps you have that outstanding or great need, and you’re feeling un-easy. I’d like to repeat something I said at the beginning of my message – You don’t need Him to lift every burden, just the heaviest. You don’t need Him to move every mountain, just the highest. You don’t need God to give you the whole loaf, just a crumb. A crumb that will satisfy. A crumb that will encourage and lift hearts as we face the peaks and valleys of our life. Allow God to give you that crumb – It’s our only need.

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