From our Gospel reading for today, from St Luke: ‘Now he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the sabbath. And there was a woman who had had a spirit of infirmity for eighteen years; she was bent over and could not fully straighten herself. And when Jesus saw her, he called her and said to her, “Woman, you are freed from your infirmity.” And he laid his hands upon her, and immediately she was made straight, and she praised God. But the ruler of the synagogue, indignant because Jesus had healed on the sabbath, said to the people, “There are six days on which work ought to be done; come on those days and be healed, and not on the sabbath day.” Then the Lord answered him, “You hypocrites! Does not each of you on the sabbath untie his ox or his ass from the manger, and lead it away to water it? And ought not this woman, a daughter of Abraham whom Satan bound for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the sabbath day?”’

Jesus saw the woman – this healing was His own initiative. He saw her need, and He responded, in the face of sharp criticism from the religious leaders of the day. He understood the length of the years she had suffered, and His mercy and compassion were there for her. She straightened up, and her first deed was to praise God.

Some healings take many years, indeed a lifetime. Our work is still to praise God, whatever the circumstances. It is a sure indication of our trust in the One who has laid down His life for us. May we grow in trust, and keep praising, and may God bless you this day.