Green Pastures, quiet waters
Green Pastures Quiet Waters
Picnic in the Meadow
This really is not picnic weather, but as I was reading scripture the other day, my mind went to just such an event. Do you remember the story of the picnic in the meadow, when Jesus fed 5 thousand men, as well as the women and children who accompanied them? What an amazing thing Jesus did! But before that happened, there was concern and doubt on the part of Jesus’ disciples. The passage in Luke reads:
“Late in the afternoon the Twelve came to him and said, "Send the crowd away so they can go to the surrounding villages and countryside and find food and lodging, because we are in a remote place here." He replied, "You give them something to eat." They answered, "We have only five loaves of bread and two fish— unless we go and buy food for all this crowd." (About five thousand men were there.) But he said to his disciples, "Make them sit down in groups of about fifty each." The disciples did so, and everybody sat down. (Luke 9:12-15)
I can certainly understand those twelve who didn’t think it was possible. They looked about them, saw the huge group of hungry people and heard Jesus’ words, “Give them something to eat”. Notice their response “We have only five loaves of bread and two fish.” Their immediate response was to look at the negative – what was lacking. The word “only” tells us much about their faith at this point. In other words, what Jesus asked them to do just couldn’t be done!
By nature and by training, I am a detail thinker. I can see possible problems when others may not. I can plan solutions in great detail and move ahead with carrying out resolutions to what is facing me. That’s a great thing, unless…..well, let’s just say I can really sympathize with the disciples that day. Jesus had said they were to feed the multitude and the first response was “how?” To them it was an impossibility. Too many people and no food with which to feed them. How, indeed.
Had they forgotten to whom they were speaking? Had they not witnessed the turning of water into wine at a wedding in Cana? They had seen him heal unseeing eyes, cast out demons and do other amazing things. But instead of responding with “Sure thing, Lord. Got it!”, they didn’t see that this time they were to have a part in the miracle that Jesus was about to perform for the hungry multitude. They needed to know how it was to be done. I too, would have wanted details. But if it can be logically explained, it is no miracle.
You know the rest of the story. “Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke them. Then he gave them to the disciples to set before the people. They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over.” (v 16,17)
Are you someone who has a tendency to first look at the hugeness of the task or problem before you, the meagreness of the ability to solve that problem and come to the conclusion: “It can’t be done”?
What has God done in your own life that has proven that He is more than able to meet each need, no matter how big, no matter how impossible it may seem. Perhaps you are facing huge financial debts that you just cannot seem to get out from under. Or maybe there is a relationship that is so damaged that you feel it will never be restored. Maybe you don’t know where your next meal is going to come from or how you will manage when you’ve had your surgery. The Lord’s got it! Just as He fed 5000 men, plus women and children, so too He will supply whatever you are lacking. It isn’t how much you have that will fill the need; it will be about what He will do with what you have if you give it to Him. Just bring Him your meager loaves and fishes and see what He will do.
“And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19)