Step Across the Line
Lord, in the quietness of this time, I want to focus my heart and mind on being with You.
Read Mark 6:30-44
 The apostles gathered around Jesus and reported to him all they had done and taught.  Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, he said to them, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.”  So they went away by themselves in a boat to a solitary place.  But many who saw them leaving recognized them and ran on foot from all the towns and got there ahead of them.  When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So he began teaching them many things.  By this time it was late in the day, so his disciples came to him. “This is a remote place,” they said, “and it’s already very late.  Send the people away so that they can go to the surrounding countryside and villages and buy themselves something to eat.”  But he answered, “You give them something to eat.” They said to him, “That would take more than half a year’s wages! Are we to go and spend that much on bread and give it to them to eat?”  “How many loaves do you have?” he asked. “Go and see.” When they found out, they said, “Five-and two fish.”  Then Jesus directed them to have all the people sit down in groups on the green grass.  So they sat down in groups of hundreds and fifties.  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 his disciples to distribute to the people. He also divided the two fish among them all.  They all ate and were satisfied,  and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces of bread and fish.  The number of the men who had eaten was five thousand. Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhy was this such an astounding miracle?
How do you feel when plans change at the last minute, especially when you’re trying to get a break, or to find time after a busy day to eat? Everyone responds differently. Jesus (34) is compassionate. I wonder what the disciples were thinking as they arrived back from their missions exhausted–and Jesus got back into teaching mode when they thought it was time for some “R & R” (34). Maybe they hoped that practical concerns would persuade Jesus to stop being with the people so that they could have the rest they’d been promised (36). Yet they get deeper into joining in with him as the day goes on. After their practical worries, it gets to, “How does it affect me?” (37) but they still obey Jesus (39-43), even though–like us–they don’t quite understand what it all means. Are you of the mindset, “I don’t know what will happen, so I won’t start”? If they’d done that, the disciples would still be sitting on the sidelines. Where do you need to gradually step across the line from watching to joining in? Take heart from the disciples. Like us, they were very ordinary people who followed Jesus one step at a time.
What’s the next step for you in joining in with Jesus? And what happens now–prayer, action, or both?
Lord, I want to be involved in whatever You’re doing in the world around me. Show me and enable me.
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