All four gospels tell us how Jesus used a little boy's lunch to feed more than 5,000 people. None of the gospel writers tells much about the boy. I hope he made it to heaven because I would love to meet him. I would also like to know who made his lunch. We always hear how God used the generosity of this boy to bless the multitudes, but the truth is that he was able to bless the multitudes because he came prepared. Someone packed his lunch.
"Here is a boy with five small barley loaves and two small fish, but how far will they go among so many?"
John 6:9 (NIV)
The Bible tells us that people followed Jesus on foot from different towns. I am sure no one expected to spend the whole day listening to Him, but you would think that after a few hours, out of the 5,000+ people, someone should have asked where the nearest McDonalds was, but according to the Bible, no one worried about what they were going to eat.
The disciples were the ones who were trying to find food for the crowd. We do not know if they asked the crowd for food or if the boy brought them his lunch, but he seemed to be the only one who came prepared to be at Jesus' feet for a while. He was the only one with something the Master could use to bless the people. He brought the raw material for a miracle.
Friends, the Bible is full of stories about two types of people. The ones God uses to do miracles and the ones whom God blesses with miracles. Even though it is lovely to be on the receiving end of a miracle, I have lived long enough to prefer not to need a miracle. I would rather be the one performing miracles.
Unfortunately, some live beyond their means in a consumer culture of "enjoy now, pay later." Others, even if they have resources to bless others, choose to only think about themselves. I do not mean to be offensive, but my friends, how will God ever use us to bless someone with finances if we never have a seed to plant or never share the seeds we have? How will our kids learn to be generous unless we teach them by being generous?
Living beyond our means or only thinking about ourselves keeps us as part of the crowd and not the miracle. Let us use wisdom regarding our finances. God could be preparing us to be at the right time and place to experience miracles. Can you imagine the boy's excitement seeing Jesus multiplying his lunch?
Friends, let us think about the future. Let us be good stewards of God's blessings and teach our kids to do the same. If we are always prepared to give Jesus what He needs to perform miracles, one of these days, our lunch could feed thousands. Wouldn't that be amazing?