By Marcia Lee Laycock, @MarciaLaycock
Five Loaves, Two Fish and You by Marcia Lee Laycock
It is the only miracle Jesus performed that is recorded in all four gospels: the feeding of the five thousand. At the beginning of the segment in Mark 6:31 to 44, we see a Jesus who is tired, disciples who were no doubt exhausted. Jesus tells them to come away with him to a quiet place, to rest.But it was not to be. The crowds preceded them. No wonder the disciples asked Jesus to send them away. Their excuse was a good one. They had no food. But it says Jesus had compassion on the people, so he didn’t do as his followers asked. Instead, he said, “You give them something to eat.”
Of course, the disciples’ response was all about the practicalities: where would they get that much food? How would they pay for it?
But Jesus isn’t stymied. He tells them to go and see what they have. Five loaves and two fish are all they find. But Jesus has a lesson in mind. He tells the disciples to organize the people into groups. I wonder if that wasn’t so that they could be easily counted, so that the magnitude of what he was about to do would be forever remembered as a miracle.
You know the end of the story – all are fed, all are satisfied. Only then does Jesus send the people away.
It is interesting, and perhaps significant, that in the Greek, Jesus said, “Give them you to eat.” An interesting turn of phrase, that, one which we would do well to ponder. How are we, as followers of Christ, to do that? Of course, you know the answer – give of your time, your skills, your knowledge. Give them your very life, the new life God chose to open to you, the life of love and mercy, the life of grace and peace. Show them that light so full in you it spills over, upon and into them.
How are we, as writers of faith, to do that? In that same way, nourish them with your unique stories of mystery and faith, of love and God’s grace. Feed them with words that will turn their faces toward the source of all nourishment. Feed them with hope, with the universal stories that touch hearts and minds, stories of how God has met needs and revealed Himself, even in times of stress and chaos when hope grows thin.
And give them your story, your testimony of what God has done and is doing in your life. Be vulnerable, be authentic. Give them your art, your music, your work, with hands and heart and will for only this, to give, to pour out, for His glory.
For you are Jesus to them. Give them you to eat.
Be vulnerable, be authentic.~ Marcia Lee Laycock (Click to Tweet)
Desperate to escape his past, the police, and especially, God, Alex Donnelly picks a good place to hide – the Yukon wilderness – but he finds even there his is pursued. What will it take for him to discover that no matter how far you run, God will find you, and no matter what you have done, God will forgive you?
Marcia Lee Laycock writes from central Alberta Canada where she is a pastor’s wife and mother of three adult daughters. She was the winner of The Best New Canadian Christian Author Award for her novel, One Smooth Stone. The sequel, A Tumbled Stone was short listed in The Word Awards. Marcia also has four devotional books in print and has contributed to several anthologies. Her work has been endorsed by Sigmund Brouwer, Janette Oke, Phil Callaway and Mark Buchanan.