S (Scripture): Mark 6:35 When it was already late, his disciples came to him and said, “This is an isolated place and it is already very late. 36 Send them away so that they can go into the surrounding countryside and villages and buy something for themselves to eat.” 37 But he answered them, “You give them something to eat.” And they said, “Should we go and buy bread for two hundred silver coins and give it to them to eat?” 38 He said to them, “How many loaves do you have? Go and see.” When they found out, they said, “Five – and two fish.”
O (Observation): …and you know how this story finishes. 5,000 (plus men and women) are fed, and with food leftover! All from 5 loaves and 2 fish!
The miracle of feeding so many with so little is the focus, for sure…but I want to lift up something else: Jesus’ focus on what the disciples bring to the table.
They had five loaves and 2 fish.
When Jesus says, “YOU feed them,” they think they’re supposed to go to the drive-thru and pick up dinner together. Nope.
Jesus says in v. 37, “YOU feed them.” In the Greek, the word “you” is highly emphasized. Jesus clearly expects something from these disciples. They gather what they can, and bring it to Jesus, who blesses it, breaks it, and multiplies it.
What Jesus had to work with was what the disciples gathered and brought forth.
A (Application): Jesus doesn’t ask us to do the miraculous. Jesus doesn’t ask us to feed the multitudes without help. Jesus simply asks the disciples to feed the people with what they have. Jesus does the miracle.
YOU feed them. We don’t have Jesus with us in person, but we do have the Spirit guiding us and taking these gifts we have and multiplying them for Kingdom work.
My trouble is that I often think that I have to work the miracle alone. With this attitude, I get intimidated and that paralyzes me with fear. But that is NOT how this gift thing works. The Spirit will guide us!
So, instead of focusing on the outcome, my strategy should perhaps be this: do now, with what you have; see the results of the Spirit; retreat; prepare again. Wash; Rinse; Repeat!
How does this work for you? Are you comfortable with doing? Are you hesitant? Either way, know that the Spirit guides you each step of the way.
P (Prayer): Lord, remind me that you are the miracle-worker. I simply bring the food to the table – food that you provided me to begin with. Amen.