Ninth Sunday after Pentecost July 26, 2015
Drawing Nearer to Jesus
Jesus had compassion for the crowd that followed him. For the crowd, the pressing need was finding food to eat. To test Philip, Jesus asked him, “Where are we to buy bread for these people to eat?” Philip answered him, “Six months’ wages would not buy enough bread for each of them to get a little” (John 6:5–7). Philip saw the five thousand, and he gave his best answer.
How often in the face of life’s challenges do we see only our limitations, not what Jesus can do in and through us? If the other disciples disagreed with Philip’s assessment of the situation, the text doesn’t inform us. Andrew offered an example of how hopeless the situation was. He told Jesus all they had was the offering of a boy’s five barley loaves and two fish. How could Andrew have known Jesus would use his argument to bless thousands?
Jesus took a simple meal of five loaves of bread and two fish to prove God’s amazing grace. The crowd pursued Jesus, not because they expected a free meal. They followed him because of his signs and the healings. They believed what they had seen, and they trusted in what their ears heard.
We too will be amazed at what we will see, hear, and do when we draw nearer to Jesus. We may have some doubts and fears in our abilities, but our faith in Jesus is strong. Because we are focused on Jesus, we see the possible and experience miracles.
Mark V. Breland, pastoral staff, Lititz Moravian Congregation, Lititz, Pennsylvania