So last week I told you I’d see you on Thursday. Well, plans changed. I started the #FindingIAM study and realized that there are 4 days of study, Monday thru Thursday, with bonus study on Friday. So I got to thinking that it would be better to complete the week of study on Thursday, then share with you on Friday or even Saturday, depending on how God leads. Let's get started.
It was 2 weeks before my son’s wedding and I “needed” a pedicure. My husband had recently lost his job, so a pedicure was NOT in the budget. A do it yourself pedi would have to do. If you know me, I was not thrilled.
Right around this same time, I spent one afternoon babysitting my neighbor’s 3-year-old daughter. She is an absolute delight! We played with Petey, my Chihuahua, watched Curious George and played with Cecil’s foam golf balls. She loves those golf balls they are bright neon colors! Anyway, babysitting is more play than work for me. I’m just practicing for when my grandson, Titus is with me!!! Anyway, a few days later, Nikki brought me a Thank You card for taking care of her daughter. Inside I found a gift certificate for a pedicure. What a sweet gesture! She knew our situation so she took care of me! Have you ever had someone unexpectedly take care of your needs? Let’s take a look at some needs being met in today’s scriptures.
I imagine we are all familiar with the miracle of Jesus feeding the 5,000. You can read about it in any of the four Gospels: Matthew 14:13-21, Mark 6:30-44, Luke 9:10-17, and John 6:1-13. We are going to take a look at 2 perspectives of this miracle, John and Mark’s. I’d like you to read them for yourself. Then I’m going to highlight some things that God has taught me this week.
Let’s take a look at Mark 6:30 [NIV]
"The apostles returned to Jesus and told Him all that they had done and taught."
As I was going through my #FindingIAM Study I found it very eye opening when Lysa TerKeurst asked what the disciples were talking about with Jesus. Here are these 12 guys, following Jesus, who is healing the sick all around Him, and all they are interested in talking about is what they have been doing. Interesting.
Now we have this huge crowd that’s been following Jesus, and we further see this selfish and prideful attitude of the disciples by the following verses in Mark 6:35-37 and John 6:5-7. Jesus knows that the crowd needs to be fed both physically and spiritually. Many in this crowd are ready to hear His spiritual message, so He feeds them with the young boy’s loaves and fishes. Jesus then has the disciples pick up the 12 baskets full of leftovers, Mark 6:43 and John 6:13.
This is where it gets really interesting. Let’s continue reading in Mark, and see what happens after the feeding of the 5,000. Read Mark 6:45-52.
Let’s take a closer look at verse 49 and 50.
"but when they saw Him walking on the lake, they thought He was a ghost. They cried out, because they all saw Him and were terrified. Immediately He spoke to them and said, "'Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.'" [NIV]
This is Jesus, whom they have been traveling and teaching with. They have been watching Him heal people! They just watched Him feed 5,000 people! What is wrong with them? Why didn’t they recognize Him? Take a look at the next 2 verses, 51 and 52.
"Then He climbed into the boat with them, and the wind died down. They were completely amazed, for they had not understood about the loaves; their hearts were hardened." [NIV] (Emphasis added)
Let’s read it from The Message.
"They didn’t understand what He had done at the supper. None of this had yet penetrated their hearts." [MSG]
Wow! They didn’t get it! Their hearts were hardened because of the pride that was in them. They still didn’t see Jesus as the Son of God. Has God ever done something for you, right in front of your eyes, and yet you didn’t see it, at least not at first? Remember I was telling you about Nikki giving me that gift certificate for a pedicure? Yes, that was a neighbor being kind and paying me back for a service, but that’s not really what it was. No! That was God taking care of me through someone else! Just like the disciples, I was blinded at first, but I did eventually recognize His goodness towards me!
If you’ve had an experience like this share with me in the comments, I’d love to hear about God’s goodness to you!!!
Living in Grace,