Daily Devotion for February 13, 2017
'Like the "Young Boy!"'
John 6:1-13 NLT
After this, Jesus crossed over to the far side of the Sea of Galilee, also known as the Sea of Tiberias. A huge crowd kept following Him wherever He went, because they saw His miraculous signs as He healed the sick. Then Jesus climbed a hill and sat down with His disciples around Him. (It was nearly time for the Jewish Passover celebration.) Jesus soon saw a huge crowd of people coming to look for Him. Turning to Philip, he asked, “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, “Even if we worked for months, we wouldn’t have enough money to feed them!”
Then Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, spoke up. “There’s a young boy here with five barley loaves and two fish. But what good is that with this huge crowd?”
“Tell everyone to sit down,” Jesus said. So they all sat down on the grassy slopes. (The men alone numbered about 5,000.) 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.
I love this story. As my youngest and I were discussing it this morning, it made me wonder who I would be like in a “test” like this; specifically, would I be more like Philip, Andrew, or like the “young boy?”
Philip was a realist, and with him I can relate! He assessed the situation through his own human understanding. His “this-can't-be-humanly-done” assessment kept him from taking on the Lord's task. Philip failed to understand that it wasn't about what he had to offer, what he could do—it was about trusting God, obeying Him, and letting GOD provide whatever was necessary for the task. Unfortunately, Philip knew he didn't have enough, so he didn't offer Jesus anything at all...
Andrew, on the other hand, seemed to have faith as small as a mustard seed (I can relate to this as well!). This disciple saw a possibility in the “young boy,” but his human assessment of the situation also got in the way—he doubted what God could do (“ But what good is that with this huge crowd?”)...
And then there was the “young boy!” The young boy must have been standing CLOSE to the Lord! Moreover, He had been LISTENING to Him! When he heard the need, he stepped forward and offered Jesus EVERYTHING he had! As a result, the Lord used the child's meager resources to accomplish one of the most spectacular miracles recorded. Because the child made himself and his resources completely available to Jesus, God did a miracle with the resources—and those meager resources ABUNDANTLY PROVIDED what was needed (GOD did it all!)...
Lord Jesus: make me more like the LAD!
Heavenly Father, I ask today that You help each of us Believers be more like that “young boy!” That is, help us desire to stay CLOSE to You, LISTEN to You, and offer Jesus EVERYTHING we have! Moreover, help us realize that You usually work through Your people—through US! You can take whatever we have and offer You (in time, ability, resources), and multiply its effectiveness BEYOND our wildest expectations!
Thank you for the example of the “young boy,” Lord: make our hearts more like the lad!
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