Monday, August 07, 2017

Devotional: Scripture is Practical

Luke 9:10-16 And the apostles, when they had returned, told Him all that they had done. Then He took them and went aside privately into a deserted place belonging to the city called Bethsaida.  But when the multitudes knew it, they followed Him; and He received them and spoke to them about the kingdom of God, and healed those who had need of healing. When the day began to wear away, the twelve came and said to Him, “Send the multitude away, that they may go into the surrounding towns and country, and lodge and get provisions; for we are in a deserted place here.”

 But He said to them, “You give them something to eat.”

And they said, “We have no more than five loaves and two fish, unless we go and buy food for all these people.” For there were about five thousand men.

Then He said to His disciples, “Make them sit down in groups of fifty.”And they did so, and made them all sit down.

Then He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, He blessed and broke them, and gave them to the disciples to set before the multitude.  So they all ate and were filled, and twelve baskets of the leftover fragments were taken up by them.

I was reading this story of the feeding of the five thousand and it struck me that it was extremely practical.  There are lessons to be learned here in how to get things done.  Here is what I gleaned from this story.

The disciples wanted Jesus to send the crowd away.  It was too large and there was no way they were going to feed that mob.  I often feel that way about my daily tasks on my list.  There are too many things to do and I feel defeated before I start. But Jesus told them to feed the crowd!  

The only resources they had were five loaves and two fishes.  It was an impossible task they thought.  So often my limited physical resources are not enough to meet the demands of the day, or so I think.

Here is where Jesus gets extremely practical.  He told the disciples to make the people sit down in groups of fifty.  When you have a big task in front of you, don't look at the whole mountain.  That is too overwhelming.  Divide the task up into smaller chunks.  

Then Jesus took the five loaves and the two fish, blessed them and gave them to the disciples to serve to the multitude and twelve baskets were left over!  Give your meager energy resources over to Jesus and then set about attacking your task just one little chunk at a time.  Before you know it, you have whittled that big task down and you are almost done with it.  You will be amazed at how tackling things in this manner will conserve your energy and keep you from getting overwhelmed. Jesus knows what you can handle and with His strength and method, you can do a lot!  Be encouraged!

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