Jan 5 — Tuesday after Epiphany Sunday
1 Jn 4:7-10
“Give them something to eat yourselves”
The feeding of the five thousand, as detailed in the Gospel of today, has always intrigued me. When I first heard this, I related this to a display of Jesus’ divinity, that fact that He could ‘multiply’ five loaves and two fish into basketloads of food, feeding five thousand men, not counting the women and children amongst the crowd.
Over time, I am convinced that this is a lesson about having ‘eyes of faith’. I am sure that our Lord did not need to demonstrate His divinity; he is, after all, the Son of God. When this first came to my mind, I became more attuned to what the disciples were saying; that it was an impossible task.
I imagined what I would have done if I had been there with Jesus. I would probably have stacked up the list of questions; how much money we had, where to buy the food from, what to do if there wasn’t enough (likely to see an angry and disgruntled crowd). Ultimately, I would probably decide that it would take too much, logistically, to arrange for everything, and would have made the same recommendations the disciples did.
Jesus trained His disciples, instead, to use their ‘eyes of faith’. In doing so, they witnessed a miracle, which taught them, and us, to continue to place our trust in Him.
Two other points struck me.
Firstly, the fact that after the crowd had been well fed, there were twelve baskets left over. TWELVE! This showed me that if we trust in the Lord, we would not only be blessed, but blessed abundantly. Does this mean that we would always get what we ask for? The crowds probably had an idea of what they wanted to eat, but ultimately, they received bread and fish, which fed their hunger.
Secondly, one question I have is what would have happened if the people were asked to go find their own food. Likely, chaos. The people would probably run about trying to meet their own needs, and missed the lessons that Jesus taught. By placing our needs in Him, the crowds were fed, both spiritually AND physically.
Brothers and sisters, let us all strive to place our trust in our Lord, but be conscious not to treat Him like our personal automated teller machine (ATM). Our Lord WILL take care of us, no matter what.
(Today’s Oxygen by Paul Wee)
Prayer: Teach us to always place our trust in You, Father. We have confidence that You know what is best for us.
Thanksgiving: Thank You Father, for your gift of our ‘five loaves and two fish’. We are grateful for Your love and care for us.