“Yehoshua’s here? And he did what?”
Kelila yelped as surprise caused her to tip the water she had just carried from the well onto her dark tunic. There was room to be frustrated but now wasn’t the time. Kelila had heard about the depth and growth of his influence from visitors coming from Bethsaida and Capernaum, her hometown Hammat and now from her own little wide-eyed boy. It delighted her immensely that her friend from many years past, Yehoshua, was finally travelling through their area; the prospect of this excited every part of her being. She thought about her husband, Alon and how he had only heard about Yehoshua from stories about her childhood. She would love for him to meet the boy, a man now, who had taught her so much about herself and in many respects had saved her life. Her own little boy continued with a look of wide amazement on his dark face,
“He came through the town Ima! The crowds following him… there were so many. Everyone wanted him!”
Kelila thought about Benjamin’s excitement and how little her life reflected Yehoshua’s well thought out teachings. Much to her shame they no longer brought her the immense joy as they once had. Certainly Yehoshua would approach a child but would he want anything to do with her? She knew he would approach someone like her but now her thoughts faltered and doubts filled her mind.
Would he help her with the issue that had been plaguing her for at least a month? She had hidden it from her family knowing she would be considered unclean. The laws would take her from their home. But she couldn’t leave. Her daughter needed special attention. The little girl was crippled; she could not move her legs. Kelila’s eyes started filling with tears but she held them back and set her eyes on the road in front of their house. Has he changed much? I hope he hasn’t.
Kelila’s six-year-old son started tugging on her damp tunic. Kelila stopped her thinking and bent down to meet her sons’ gaze. While doing so she pushed her own thick, curly hair away from her face. Like mother like son.
“Oh Ima!” Her little boys’ dark, curly hair sprung from all sides of his head and today looked ever more wild than it ever had.
“He said hello to me and he looked down and saw my broken arm. He healed me. He knelt down like this.” Her son lowered his knees to the earth and looked up at his Ima.
“And touched me. I felt warmth shoot through my arm and now I can move it. Oh, he’s so kind Ima.”
Kelila could feel tears welling up in her dark eyes, “Yes, my son. He is.” She put her hand onto little Benjamin’s dark head. Kelila remembered the time her and Yehoshua had been running through Jerusalem, searching for her older sister Deborah. Kelila had been in a big mess with Romans, supposed friends and even her family. She had been close to death on many occasions mentally, physically and spiritually. He had shown her how to achieve the unthinkable. He taught her how to have a relationship with Elohim, the God of Jacob and Creator of all things. Yehoshua taught her how to pray to the his heavenly Father, Avinu shebashamayim, yitkadesh shimkhah. Tavo malkhutekha, ye’ aseh retzonekha, ba’aretz ka’ aher na ‘ashah va ‘shamayim…
Her heart had leapt for joy when she had heard God answer her but the fatherly connection Yehoshua had with his “Heavenly Father” was still something she did not quite understand. “There’s a time for everything…” She supposed.
The time is now. Kelila felt her spirit leap at these words but doubted them. It’s not time for me to meet with Yehoshua again… I’m too much of a mess. She thought about her daughter and her own condition. She may be but I’m not worthy of his healing touch. She heard a whisper as the breeze blew against her face and tousled her long hair. Kelila, your time is now. She shivered, wondering if she had heard correctly, and pushing her hair onto one side of her neck and looked back up at the road.
She had decided. This was the only way she and her daughter could possibly be healed. She would ask Alon if he could accompany her into the town and ask merchants if they knew where Yehoshua would be leaving to next. Hopefully Alon would suggest they pack provisions and take a journey to where Yehoshua was teaching. It may be a long, hard walk but she knew not one step would be given to regret. She hoped it was sooner than later that she would be looking into the gentle eyes of her friend. “Lord, please lead us.” And He did.
To be continued…