You Feed the People

This week’s devotional is reposted from the UCC daily devotion for July 20, 2017. You can view the original, and sign up for the daily devotional, here.

“When it grew late, his disciples came to him and said, ‘This is a deserted place, and the hour is now very late; send them away so that they may go into the surrounding country and villages and buy something to eat.’ But he answered them, ‘You give them something to eat.'” – Matthew 14: 15 – 16

“We can’t do this . . . we don’t have the money.” 

But at least sometimes it isn’t a resource issue. It is a faith issue.

There were 5,000 hungry people in a desolate place, a long ways from even a “7 – 11” much less a “Safeway.” Jesus said to the disciples, “You give them something to eat.” They took inventory.

And you know what they found.

Five loaves and two fish. Enough for a family picnic, not enough for a hungry crowd of 5,000.

I am absolutely certain that if I had been among the disciples at that moment I would have complained that this was ridiculous and that Jesus needed to get real.

But I have been there, and you have too. Maybe you’re there now? “There” is where there’s a huge gap, a yawning chasm, between the need before you and the resources at hand. By a factor of, oh say, 1,000. “This is ridiculous — Jesus will you please get real.”

I don’t know how everyone got fed that day.

But I do know this: when the disciples gave what they had to Jesus, he took it, he blessed it, he used it — and there was enough.

It’s not always a resource issue. Sometimes it’s a faith issue. When we offer what we have and who we are to Jesus a new — unexpected — reality comes into being. “And all ate and were filled,” (Matthew 14: 20).