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Saturday, February 17, 2024

Feeding the 5000 (Part 1)

John 6:5-11

“5 When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward him, he said to Philip, “Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?” 6 He asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do.7 Philip answered him, “It would take more than half a year’s wages to buy enough bread for each one to have a bite!” 8 Another of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, spoke up, 9 “Here is a boy with five small barley loaves and two small fish, but how far will they go among so many?”10 Jesus said, “Have the people sit down.” There was plenty of grass in that place, and they sat down (about five thousand men were there). 11 Jesus then took the loaves, gave thanks, and distributed to those who were seated as much as they wanted. He did the same with the fish.”

Jesus, at times, sought out solitary places to withdraw from the crowds that constantly surrounded him, to pray, and to teach his disciples.  This particular time he withdrew from Capernaum by boat to the other side of the Sea of Galilee, about four miles away.  

Unexpectedly, the crowd of people followed him by land and when Jesus arrived, a great crowd was arriving; about 5,000 men sat down on the grass in front of Jesus.  

Jesus’ trip to a quiet, solitary place did not go as he and the disciples had planned.  But Jesus, through the miracle of feeding the 5000, was able to teach His disciples about himself, about sharing, kindness, mercy, servanthood, abundance, and about love. 

When things do not go as planned for us, we have a choice.  We can react in anger or fear, or we can look at the situation as a time to learn what Christ is teaching us.

What is it that Christ is teaching you today?

May the love of Christ be with you,

Rev. Eric Lanier (Retired)

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