Jesus got into a boat toward Bethsaida to a remote area to be alone with us. We haven’t eaten for quite a while and Jesus wanted us all to find some food. As we arrived on the seashore, again, crowds were there. People had heard where we were going and followed on foot from many areas. Jesus saw the crowd and had compassion on them. He saw them as sheep without a shepherd needing guidance and love. He healed the sick and taught them about the kingdom of God.
It was evening and the skies were getting dark. The area was remote so it would take some time for anyone to go to their villages for food and rest. The disciples asked Jesus to send the crowd to the local villages and farms to eat. I knew I was hungry and ready to rest myself so I joined in agreement with them.
Jesus just looked at us and said “You feed them.”
What? How can we feed them when we don’t have enough money? Even a month’s wages from all of us wouldn’t be enough to feed the many people that are around us. Jesus told us to ask around if anyone had any food.
Andrew came back and replied to Jesus, “There’s a young boy here with five loaves of barley bread and two fish.”
I thought, “How in the world is that going to feed these many people? I know Jesus can perform miracles, casting out demons, bringing people back from the dead, calming storms, etc. But to only use five loaves of bread and two fish? I guess I need to trust him. He has never failed me or any of us so far.”
Jesus told Andrew to bring the food to him. He asked the people to sit down on the ground. They sat in groups of fifty and a hundred. Jesus lifted the food up and prayed over it. He blessed it. Jesus then broke the bread and fish and gave it to us to distribute among the people. It took quite a long time to give the food out. The food just kept coming!
We all sat down as well and ate. I was so glad to finally eat. The bread was lovely and soft. The fish was fresh. I ate until I was completely full up and could no longer eat anything else.
After everyone finished eating, Jesus asked us to pick up the leftovers. The twelve disciples had a basket each. We ladies helped as well. Despite the amount of people, it seemed ages to pick up the food. When we were finished cleaning up, all twelve baskets were full!
I was completely amazed. Jesus just fed about 5,000 men plus women and children with just five barley loaves and two fish. Is there anything impossible for Jesus?
When the people realised what had happened they exclaimed, “Surely, he is the Prophet we have been expecting!”
Yes, Jesus is indeed. But He is more than a Prophet. He is the Son of God. He is amazing!
Jesus spent time chatting with the people, getting to know them. I loved to watch his reactions as he went around the groups. He had so much tenderness in his eyes. He cared for people no matter their status in life. Everyone mattered and I believe that is what drew the crowds to him. People needed to be encouraged and loved. Jesus is who they have been looking for.
For further study:
Matthew 14:13-21; Mark 6:30-44; Luke 9:10-17; John 6:1-14