My Daily Journal:
I would not necessarily count the gift of hospitality as one of my spiritual gifts. I know there are people who have this gift. Like Martha, of Mary and Martha fame. There are people at our church (and in BSF) who’s first thought seems to be to always put the needs of others before their own needs. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not calloused to the needs of others or against having gatherings, but the organization aspect of it is not one of my gifts. Just like the disciples.
When faced with between 5,000 and 20,000 people in a remote area, their first thought was not one of hospitality, it was how do we move this along and get these people out of here. But Jesus’ words were clear, “You give them something to eat.” (Matt 14:16).
The lesson was one of obedience over comfort and natural inclinations. Jesus didn’t ask them. Jesus didn’t tell them to form a committee. Jesus didn’t seek out the people of the crowd who had the most to redistribute it. Jesus didn’t chastise the people for being unprepared, He responded as one in charge should respond. He gave clear and explicit direction. 1. You give them something to eat, 2. Bring what you have to me. 3. He directed them into groups.
And, what happened? The same thing that always happens when we serve others in obedience to Jesus. What we end up with is always more than what we began with. When we care for others in Jesus name, the care we receive back is always greater. When we love others in Jesus name, the same is true.
Don’t miss the fact that there were 12 disciples and 12 baskets left over, each completely full.
While I understand the role of spiritual gifts, I think this miracle demonstrates it is never our own gifts we should rely upon, but the gift of Jesus Christ. Our calling is to be obedient to Him, to submit to His organization, to follow His commands, to do the work He gives me to do, to trust fully in Him, not my needs, wants, comfort-level, weariness or hunger. Obedience comes first.
John the Baptist had been murdered by Herod. Herod wanted to see Jesus.
He had compassion on them. He had them fed
They were practical. They were in a remote place with 5000 people, it was late, they were hungry. “not my problem”
Jesus taught them the economies of Heaven. Which begin and end with reliance on Jesus. They do not need to go away – you feed them. Bring them to me. They all ate and were satisfied.
bring them to me. Give thanks to heaven. Begin with what you have and serve others with it. All are satisfied and the remaining is more than what you start with.
Compassion, power, miracle maker, take care of physical needs so that spiritual needs can be met
When I’m at then end of my resources it reminds me to rely on Jesus to keep and protect and nourish me in a way I can’t do for myself
By feeding them. By being compassionate. By trusting in God to magnify what I hold into enough.