Welcome to Real Life. How much is enough?
My hobbies include eating
and also thinking about the next time
I will be eating.
I’m not enough. I’m not strong enough, wise enough, holy enough. I wonder if the disciples felt this—all the time—in Jesus’ presence. And perhaps never more so than on the day they stood before five thousand hungry souls and Jesus said, “You give them something to eat.”
Crowds had begun following Jesus everywhere. (Consider for a moment how exhausting that must have been!) On this particular day, Jesus withdrew to a remote location with his disciples. But the people found him. Not just a few, thousands showed up. When Jesus saw their faces, he didn’t grumble or sigh. His heart was moved with loving compassion. He welcomed them, taught them about God’s kingdom, and healed every sickness and disease.
Later in the day, stomachs began growling. Unfortunately, Uber Eats did not deliver there. So, the disciples approached Jesus and said, “Lord, it’s late. Everyone’s hungry. Send the people away so they can go into the villages and buy some dinner.”
That’s when he replied, “You give them something to eat.”
“But all we have are five loaves of bread and two fish. It would take more than half a year’s wages for each one to have a bite.” It’s not enough!
“Bring what you have to me,” Jesus instructed them. He took their not enough, lifted it to heaven, broke it, and began passing loaves and fish to his disciples. The twelve distributed it. And they gave the people something to eat. After everyone had more than enough, the disciples collected twelve baskets of leftovers.
The reality is the disciples did not have enough. But when a small boy offered his dinner of fives loaves and two fish, and they placed it into Jesus’ hands, he transformed not-enough into more-than-enough. Jesus would not always be physically present with his disciples. You give them something to eat. Because after I’m gone, you will step into my place and carry on my work empowered by my Spirit.
You and I cannot multiply loaves and fish. We cannot meet the overwhelming needs in front of us. God knows this. Though it may seem small, he’s given all of us something: faith, time, knowledge, finances, inspiration, talent. First, will we give him what’s in our hands? And then, will we trust God to multiply it and do what we cannot?
Like the disciples, we often cannot see beyond what’s in our hands. We try to live and serve and meet needs with five loaves and two fish. It’s never enough. Instead, let our inadequacies lead us to the One who is more than enough.
“I am the bread of life,” Jesus declared.
“Whoever comes to me will never go hungry,
and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.”
Jesus chose twelve ordinary people to carry on the work of his kingdom. Today, he chooses you and me. We are the hands and feet of Christ. People are hungry! When the needs before us feel overwhelming, don’t despair or send the people away. “You give them something to eat,” Jesus tells us. Because in his hands, five loaves and two fish are more than enough!
Dear Lord Jesus,
Forgive us for trying to do your work without you.
Apart from you, we can do nothing.
Help us recognize the gifts and resources you have given us.
We place them in your hands.
Increase our faith as we trust you to multiply them,
To do above and beyond all we can ask or imagine.
We’re trusting you for more than enough.
In Jesus’ name. Amen.
The last few months, I’ve experienced technical issues and my blog was not sent to my email subscribers. I apologize. Hopefully, the issue is now resolved. Thanks so much for your patience and support. I so appreciate my email subscribers!
Peggi Tustan is an ordinary woman living and extraordinary real Life in Christ. Visit her at www.eggitustan.com.