In John chapter 6 we see Jesus attracting HUGE crowds because “They saw his miraculous signs as he healed the sick.” These people were not only hurting, broken & in need of the Master’s touch, but they were also tired & hungry after traveling miles on end. Jesus, caring about every detail of their lives, asked Philip “Where can we buy bread to feed all these people?” He was testing Philip, for he already knew what he was going to do.” Philip replied probably like most of us would with, “Even if we worked for months, we wouldn’t have enough money to feed them!”
But Andrew saw something Philip didn’t see & said to Jesus “There’s a young boy here with five barley loaves and two fish. But what good is that with this huge crowd?”
When Jesus saw the little boy with his 5 loaves & 2 fish, He saw more than enough! And the rest is history! “Then Jesus took the loaves, gave thanks to God, and distributed them to the people. Afterward he did the same with the fish. And they all ate as much as they wanted. After everyone was full, Jesus told his disciples, “Now gather the leftovers, so that nothing is wasted.” So they picked up the pieces and filled twelve baskets with scraps left by the people who had eaten from the five barley loaves. When the people saw him do this miraculous sign, they exclaimed, “Surely, he is the Prophet we have been expecting!”
Jesus used a little boy to do a BIG miracle.
People’s lives were changed.
Jesus was glorified.
A couple of weeks ago our youth ministry sponsored a “Christmas Caroling Outreach” to an assisted living home nearby. Students came early after school to rehearse Christmas carols (Which at times sounded more like cats meowing! Thank God the Bible says to “Make a joyful noise right?!) & write out Christmas cards to the elderly.
We prepped the students on the condition of the elderly people that we would be visiting – that many of them were lonely, in pain & suffering from various conditions. After joining together in prayer, we loaded up & drove to our destination where we were briefed by the Director of Operations & told that there were 3 different facilities we would be visiting.
We went to the first facility & after a brief introduction, began to sing our little hearts out to the seniors! At first our students were shy & timid, but as each song passed they got more & more comfortable & began to sing louder & louder as smiles began to pop up on their faces!
After the carols, we dispersed to meet the elderly & hand out the Christmas cards. Again, at first, many students were intimidated, but after a few times they began to really warm up to the seniors & talk with them, laugh with them & even pray with them! Students were moved with compassion as tears flowed from some of the elderly’s eyes. I was amazed to see some of the students I would least expect, leaving the main meeting room to go & find elderly people who were off by themselves all alone & greet them with a hug & a card!
Time flew by as students were having so much fun being the “Hands & feet” of Jesus & adding “Deeds” to their faith that they didn’t want to leave! In a world & culture that has made everything to be all about them, they suddenly realized that life was not all about them & that it was truly “More blessed to give then to receive!”
Amazing things happen when students go from watching to playing. From being ministered to, to doing the ministry. From receiving to giving. Jesus used the little they had (Tone deaf Christmas carols & hand-written cards) to do BIG miracles, the elderly’s lives were changed on a cold winter’ night & Jesus was glorified! – Derek