“Two hundred denarii would not be enough buy enough bread for each of them to get a little”  John 6:7

“There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish but what are they for so many?  John 6:9

It is a dilemma that has potentially impacted anyone who has been responsible for a gathering or function.  You look out at those who are attending and you watch more and more pour in and you come to realize:  I don’t have enough!  You look around in a panic.  You start to scramble.  You first start asking yourself:  What are my resources.  You reach back and pull out your wallet or check in your petty cash;  Nope, don’t have near enough there, you find.  You start looking around at your other resources.  What do I have on hand that I might be able to stretch to satisfy all these people?  I can only stretch finger sandwiches so far and the punch will soon become water if I weaken it anymore.  Is a peanut per person going to be acceptable?

Jesus is not a showman or the world’s best marketer.  If He had been, He would have made grandiose announcements about His miraculous providing of food.  If His fame and His Glory was His motivation, He would make sure that everyone in the crowd completely knew how the baskets were coming to them full.  Jesus did none of that.

However, Jesus was and is a great teacher.  His goal is that we understand what mercy, power, and capabilities come from following Him and putting our complete faith and trust in Him.  So when 5000 people follow Him out to a secluded area where there is no readily available food and Jesus knows they will need to eat, He first turns to his disciples.  Jesus wants to first turn to the human resources at hand.  So He initially asks Phillip how much it would cost to buy bread for such a crowd.  By Phillip’s response it is clear that the disciples don’t have two hundred denarii (about a half a years wages) readily available to use.  What other resources are available?  Andrew another of the disciples stumbles upon a boy with some small loaves of bread and two measly fish.  Yet Andrew dismisses the boy’s resources out of hand as not being enough.  The disciples are stymied.  That is exactly where Jesus needs them to understand that they are.  There is no earthly way for the disciples to fulfill the need that is gathered right in front of them.

So Jesus takes over.  It is time to teach.  He knows what must come first, giving thanks to His Heavenly Father for the bounty of the bread and the fish.  Then after having the people sit down He distributes the bread and the fish.  Using a little boy’s meager resources, Jesus just doesn’t give people a morsel or small bite to eat.  No each person there ate until they were satisfied.  And just to show the length of Jesus’s power, there was food left over.

Like the disciples, we are facing challenges in our lives.  We look out and see a need or many needs, we are faced with obstacles and seemingly insurmountable odds at fulfilling those needs.  We want to help, to make a difference and the world answers us, you don’t have the resources.  You are not rich enough, or powerful enough.  What you have is too meager to even attempt to try.  So don’t even attempt.  Turn your back.  Give up.

Jesus Christ looks at us.  “Do you, on your own have enough money?” He asks.  “No” we answer.  “Well do you have enough other resources?”  Christ asks.  We look at what pitifully little we have and reply:  “All I have is me and these few things.”  Perhaps, in frustration and hurt at our failure we start to turn and walk away.  Jesus Christ lovingly stops us and responds:  “Dear loved one, you have far more than you could ever need.  For you have Me.  Believe in Me and watch what I can make out of what you have!”

Brothers and Sisters in Christ, this is about much more than food.  It is the humbling realization that on our own we are incapable of doing all that we need and want to get done.  No matter how good our intentions, apart from Jesus Christ, we will always come up short.  But notice this, Jesus charged not one of those 5000 for the meal that they had.  Jesus Christ did not require any payment from the disciples for them to gain the understanding of what happened.  Jesus Christ gave and gives freely today; going so far as to freely give His life for us, that we may have access to Our Heavenly Father.  Whatever great earthly treasures we have will never be enough apart from Christ.  But come to Christ, especially if you have very little and experience the amazing feats you through Him will achieve.

Our Most Gracious and Heavenly Father, we confess that far too often we try to achieve on our own.  From out earthly judgements, Merciful Father, we believe we must wait until we are rich enough, educated or experienced enough, strong enough or old enough before we attempt things. With far too great a frequency, we rely on ourselves.  But through Your Son Jesus Christ, You have taught us differently Dear Father.  You have taught us to come to You first, to rely on You, to understand that what comes from and through You will always be greater than what we can do on our own.  So help us Dear Father, to come to You first.  That faithfully calling upon You in the Name Of Your Precious Son Jesus Christ, we can achieve momentous things bringing light to this dark world.  Help us to have pure motives in that what we strive to achieve is not to the glory of our own names but will bring Glory and Honor to You Dear Father.  In the name of Jesus Christ we pray.  Amen.