02-24-08

It seems like it must have started off as a chance to get away and take a break.  The disciples had been sent out on little mission trips preaching the gospel, healing the sick, and casting out demons.  At the same time, word had come that John the Baptist had been executed by Herod.  And so Jesus took the guys and they headed off to a deserted place. It seems that they were intending to take a well deserved break.  But things didn’t turn out that way.  The crowds got wind of where Jesus was going and instead of thirteen men getting a chance to rest, they found themselves in a tidal wave of ministry as thousands of people showed up at their retreat.  A day of rest turned into a long day of ministry and the disciples began to encourage Jesus to send the people away so they could all find something to eat.  Jesus responded by saying, “You give them something to eat” (Luke 9:13).  We look back at this incident and realize that Jesus was testing the disciples and teaching them a lesson of faith.  But I imagine at the time they thought He was crazy.  All they had was a few loaves of bread and a couple of fish.  And thousands of guests.

You know the rest of the story.  The disciples gave Jesus what little they had.  He took it, blessed it, and miraculously fed the entire crowd with leftovers to boot.

Are you feeling a bit stretched lately?  Feel like you need to take a break but instead of a chance to rest all you can see are hungry people?  Take what little you have and give it to the Lord.  He can bless it and multiply it, but you must first give it to Him.  The question is not about what you have to give, but whether you’ll trust Him to use it.