It was the end of the day and we were in a desolate place. The Master intended for us to retrieve as He was saddened by John’s death. We were all sad, excited for what was going on and tired at the same time. We had just come back from following His commission to preach God’s Kingdom to the people. He had given us all power and authority and we did things we could never had imagined! We wanted to retrieve for a while as well but the people followed us and the Master could never send them away. He welcomed them and continue to give them “The Message”. He also healed the sick and perform miracles, He never seemed to want to stop.( this Reading comes from Luke 9:12-17)
We had been with the people for hours! Jesus kept going and the people could not get enough! We knew there was nothing nearby and we just had a few supplies for ourselves intended for this retreat. Not because The Master ever planned to take supplies with us but somehow we had them. Knowing that the Master would not stop, for it always seemed as if He was running against time and knowing that the people needed food and lodging, we suggested for Him to send them to the surrounding Villages to be fed and to rest. His answer surprised us!
He looked at us, perplexed, and He said “you give them something to eat!” us give five thousand people something to eat?! Was the Master so tired He did not know what He was saying? He even seemed upset that we did not feed them. We told Him we only had two fish and five loafs of bread. He asked us to bring it to him and to sit the people in groups of fifty. No one sat alone. We had no idea what He was intending to do but we had seen so much lately it did not matter. We followed directions.
He took the bread and the two fish and looking up to Heaven, He gave thanks and broke the Loaves. Each one of us had a basket and He kept filling it up with the bread and fish and we kept passing it on to the people. They were so hungry! They all ate plenty and we did too! We spent time in fellowship with each other sharing this wonderful message the Lord was giving to us! It gave us hope! it brought us life! We were also marveling at what the Master had done that day! When we all finished, each one of us took a basket and filled it up with the leftover food.
Afterwards we thought about that day and what the Master meant when He asked “you give them something to eat” Initially we were mesmerized at His powers to feed and provide for all those people! He had done so many things! bring the dead to life! heal people! take demons out and so many other “miracles”. When he commissioned us with “The Message” He gave us all those powers too! Did He mean we could have done what He did?!! We could have done what He did!!
How many times have we heard people in ministry speak about God’s provisions? If you haven’t, just pick up a book or two of people in ministry and see their testimony about how God has provided for them. I have heard comments like,” We needed land for a church and God provided it” “our medical bills were piling up, but God supplied the means to cover them” “We had no idea how we were going to make it happen, but God provide for us” I think this is the part where people have gotten confused and have parted from the right road to the road of the prosperity Gospel. For God does provide plenty but to those whose heart is in the right place. The Word says: Seek first the kingdom of God and everything else will be added unto you (Matthew 6:33)
Some of you may know that I was one of the Ebola fighters that went to West Africa during the Ebola epidemic. I can tell you first hand that as the burden pain was in my heart to help those who were suffering, I had no idea how I would get there as I did not have the means. God provided and I saw Him at work in my life and the life of others. That experience helped me so much in increasing my faith in God for His provisions!
You may be thinking what does this have to do with the feeding of the five thousand? The way I see it is Jesus’s most important task for us and what He has commissioned us to do is to preach the Gospel! Yes!, like the apostles were commissioned so are we! What is the Gospel? Matthew 28:19-20 says: Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; And lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.
Two questions here. What is a disciple and what are Jesus’s Commandments? A disciple is someone who follows in the steps of Jesus. You and I are learning to do that by Dining with Him and absorbing “The Word” from Him. Really paying attention to what He is saying to us and being in the same mind as his. John 8:31 says: If you continue in My Word, then you are truly disciples of mine.
The second question is what are His commandments? His commandments are found in the bible, but The two most important ones He told us to follow are found in Matthew 22:37-40. You shall love the Lord Your God with all your heart, and with all your Soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and foremost commandment and the second is like it. You should love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend the whole law and the prophets. Meaning that everything the prophets came to tell us and everything that is in the Word of God is summarized and is as simple as these two commandments.
That fishy day, show us that when doing God’s kingdom work, however you have been equipped for it, all you have to do is be faithful following His steps and He will provide the rest. “You feed them” He says. He says you can! and you can!