Rarely do the Bible authors describe every detail in a given story. We know that we have all we need in Scripture, but sometimes, especially in the narrative or story-telling passages, we could use some cultural and emotional details to help bring those people more to life in our minds.
What color was Sarah’s robe when she listened to the three angels predict her impending pregnancy (Gen. 18:12)? Was it windy and dusty? Hot? Did she have a maidservant inside making bread, laughing with her? We’ll never know, of course, but imagining such details helps place a real person from long ago more firmly in our minds so that we come to understand her a bit better.
My friend Rebecca Carrell loves to develop the stories of biblical characters as a means to understanding them better. Part of her personal devotion and Bible study process sometimes includes jotting down “what if” details about a given story in Scripture. These creative writing projects help her enter into the mindset of that person, or what she might have been thinking and feeling, in the context of her story. How did Sarah feel? What might Mary have been thinking when she “pondered” the visit from the shepherds (Luke 2:19)? These sorts of questions find creative license in a fictional short story.
So, what you are about to read isn’t scripture, but it’s based on a biblical story. The details are made up, but within contextual and cultural bounds to be plausible. Enter in as Rebecca imagines what it must have been like to live with a bleeding illness for twelve years and then meet the Teacher who would change your life.