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.” John 6:5-11
Imagine the scene. A young boy lost in a crowd of more than 5000 people. He overhears the disciples stressing over feeding them all. He’s willing to share his fish and bread, his little lunch; but the disciples dismiss him. And his lunch.
- It’s not enough.
- It’s insignificant.
- It will never measure up.
When Jesus saw the little boy and the little lunch, He knew. He immediately saw potential—not just to feed the crowd, but for God to do something miraculous. The disciples couldn’t see it yet. Only Jesus and the little boy imagined what could happen.
I can relate to this boy. I’ve stood before the huge crowd with my little sack of dreams and wondered, ”What good is that with this huge crowd?”
I can confidently say that everyone who dares to offer what they have to the world has asked this same question. We wonder if what we have is good enough. If we’ll be taken seriously. If we really have something of value to offer the crowd.
Like the boy, we take a faltering step forward, knees knocking, head bowed, holding out our measly offering; hoping, just hoping, that somehow Jesus can take what we have and use it to help someone, anyone.
We all may start with a little lunch, but we also begin with big dreams. The young boy offered his lunch to Jesus. Did he imagine Jesus would be able to miraculously feed the crowd? Maybe. He just knew he couldn’t hold back. He had a world to change. He loved Jesus and was willing to give whatever He had to that purpose.
How similar we are to that young boy. I encourage you today—see your little lunch through the eyes of Jesus.Begin to imagine what could happen as the miracle of multiplication sweeps through your life. Some of us may have a little more experience, know a few more people, or be farther along in our journey; but we all start by offering what we have to God. Then he takes it and blesses it. And changes the world with it.
Prayer: Lord, as I read this story of the little boy’s lunch, I can relate. I often feel insignificant and unworthy of doing “big” things for you. But like the little boy, I offer what I do have and ask you to take it, bless it, and use it to help others. Give me a new sense of boldness as I stand before the crowd. Amen