Bloom Where You’re Planted: Jesus, Part III

“They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.”Matthew 14:16

Please read Matthew 14:13-21

 When Jesus heard what had happened, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place. Hearing of this, the crowds followed him on foot from the towns. 14 When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick.

15 As evening approached, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away, so they can go to the villages and buy themselves some food.”

16 Jesus replied, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.”

17 “We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish,” they answered.

18 “Bring them here to me,” he said. 19 And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. 20 They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. 21 The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children.

Jesus agreed with the assessment that the people needed to eat.  His opinion differed on the how they were to be fed.

Reread Matthew 14:14 “When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick.”

Jesus had compassion on them.  Who do you take compassion on?  Your spouse, your kids, your family, your friends, your co-workers?

When you see a loved one in need, don’t you jump in to assist with whatever that need is?

Jesus knew the crowds of people were capable of caring for their own needs.  Somehow, their needs would be met.

Jesus had compassion on them. He reached out to meet the very real, very physical need for food.

Remember, Jesus was heartbroken over John’s death. Yet, he refused to let his personal pain break the hearts of others. He had the opportunity to, right then, in the midst of his sorrow, reach out spiritually and physically, help over 5,000 men, plus the women and children.

And that is exactly what he chose.

Reflections:

1) When I’m hurt, do I notice opportunities to serve others?

2) How can I overcome my self-centeredness?

3) Reflect on Romans 8:26 and Romans 8:34. In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.  Romans 8:26

 Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Romans 8:34

Even when we ourselves are distracted from prayer, the Holy Spirit and Jesus are both interceding for all of us.

Do you allow your heart to hear their urging?

Thank you for reading!  Please return tomorrow, May 21 for the next post.

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