The day was drawing to a close, and the twelve came to him and said, “Send the crowd away, so that they may go into the surrounding villages and countryside, to lodge and get provisions; for we are here in a deserted place.” But he said to them, “You give them something to eat.” They said, “We have no more than five loaves and two fish—unless we are to go and buy food for all these people.” For there were about five thousand men. And he said to his disciples, “Make them sit down in groups of about fifty each.” They did so and made them all sit down. And taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke them, and gave them to the disciples to set before the crowd. And all ate and were filled. What was left over was gathered up, twelve baskets of broken pieces.
Food For Thought:
There have been many different interpretations of this story. One of my favorites is that the reason that there was so much food left over at the end is because everyone gave out of what they had and there was plenty leftover. I grew up United Methodist and I can attest to this. When people give out of what they have to others, there always seems to be plenty that is leftover. I think this is what God is trying to communicate to us through the story. We should give, and plenty will be leftover for others. This is the Christian ideal. We should share what we have been given with others. I have to admit that I don’t always take this message to heart. Sometimes I am selfish and don’t share what I have, but I think it’s important and I strive to give more of myself each day. One of my favorite quotes from John Wesley is “Do all the good you can. By all the means you can. In all the ways you can. In all the places you can. At all the times you can. To all the people you can. As long as ever you can.” Today, I encourage you to take this quote to heart and figure out how you can do the good you can.
God of the covenant, you call us to be fruitful servants within creation, and to offer our lives as the foundation of your realm. We lay before you the desires of our hearts, that we may be transformed by their fulfillment. In your sacred name we pray, Amen.