But he answered, “You give them something to eat.” (Mark 6:37)
THE DISCIPLES GLANCED NERVOUSLY at each other as they processed the most recent thing Jesus said to them: “You give them something to eat.” Really? Five thousand men—many with their families—sat scattered on the grass, waiting for Jesus either to give another class session or to dismiss them for the evening. The disciples thought it was time to let them go and get some dinner, when Jesus challenged them to feed the vast crowd.
You and I have likely never faced such a crowd, but we have felt what the disciples felt. Surely sometime the Master has called you to do something that feels impossible: to raise a child with special needs, to care for a spouse in failing health, or to make your church a welcoming place in a difficult neighborhood. Facing these obstacles feels insurmountable; we realize that we ourselves don’t have enough resources.
Disciples of Jesus have more than we think we do. God’s ministry isn’t accomplished through our own cleverness or resources, but by the Holy Spirit. We use our little gifts: we practice faithful care, we love well, and we work to change hearts and minds. As we do, we discover that though these gifts are insignificant on their own, the Holy Spirit can use them to bless the world. Therefore, we use what we have—and we have more than we think.
Use the gifts you have been given and watch God work.
Michael Jordan is the dean of the chapel at Houghton College (New York), where he also serves as chair of the Department of Biblical Studies, Theology, and Philosophy.
© 2019 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission.