Scripture: Matthew 14:13-21
Key verses: (13-21) 13Now when Jesus heard this, he withdrew from there in a boat to a deserted place by himself. But when the crowds heard it, they followed him on foot from the towns. 14When he went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them and cured their sick. 15When it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a deserted place, and the hour is now late; send the crowds away so that they may go into the villages and buy food for themselves.” 16Jesus said to them, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.” 17They replied, “We have nothing here but five loaves and two fish.” 18And he said, “Bring them here to me.” 19Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 20And all ate and were filled; and they took up what was left over of the broken pieces, twelve baskets full. 21And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children.
Reflection: Jesus does what needs doing. When he needed time alone, he actually took it. When a crowd followed him relentlessly, he had compassion on them. When he saw sick people, he healed them. When they got hungry, he fed them. When his disciples said, “we can’t,” he showed them they could. When there wasn’t nearly enough, he made leftovers aplenty.
What is it that needs doing today? Where are the barriers that seem too high to scale? What circumstances seem impossible to overcome? Jesus can make a way. I don’t mean in the find-me-a-parking-place-I’m-late-for-the-doctor kind of way. I mean the I’m-sick-and-Jesus-knows-about healing-that-is-more-than-even-wellness kind of way. It takes setting aside what we think God ought to be up to on our behalf, and looking for what God is actually doing. Where is love at work? Where is wholeness at work? Where is forgiveness and grace at work? It might just be in the most broken places, the places with the most need, maybe even the places that have nothing to do with our usual daily worries. May God open our eyes to where Jesus is making a way, and show us how to join in.
Prayer: Lord, you do impossible things, with love. Help me to see where you are bringing about healing and wholeness. Help me trust in you. And show me how to join your ministry of love and justice in the world. In the name of Christ, I pray. Amen.
Author: Julie Hester
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].