One of the many things which I love about our Church family is the willingness to share. At the beach, car boots are opened, and boxes containing sandwiches, crisps, buns etc are handed around everyone. The food, tea/coffee, milk, juice etc. is shared amongst each other.
In the bible we read about a picnic of a different kind. Each of the four Gospels gives us the account of the Feeding of the 5000. In this passage we read about a multitude of people needing fed, and Jesus tells them to sit down on the grass. He prays over the bread and fish and it is distributed among the people. We are told that whenever the ‘picnic’ was finished and all the spare food was gathered up there was enough left to fill 12 baskets. In John’s account of the Feeding of the 5000 we read that the fish and bread came from a boy who was willing to share with others.
One thing which so often is overlooked is what was initially provided. I am sure that the disciples wondered to themselves and asked ‘what use is this amount to so many people?’ (John 6:9). However, this was all it took – five barley loaves and two fish.
Do you ever think that your gift and capabilities are insignificant? As long as we give our best, no matter how insignificant we may feel, God can take it and use it to feed 5000 souls. However, no matter what we offer, we must offer it in faith and love. This is the Jesus model and after all look at what God did for us.
God offered his Son in the fullness of faith and love for you and for me – for us all. He gave his life as a ransom for us all (Mark 10:45). I know we didn’t ask God to make such an offering, but I for one am so thankful that he did. It is through Faith in Jesus and Love for Him that we can receive the greatest reward of all – the gift of Eternal Life.
God sent his Son, They called him Jesus;
he came to love, heal and forgive;
he lived and died to buy my pardon,
an empty grave is there to prove my Saviour lives.
(Church of Ireland Hymnal 2000 - Hymn 669)