Four thousand people came together back in the day, sat on the ground, and listened to Jesus for three compelling days. Compelling, we presume, because they did not leave. They stayed because they were hungry, hungry for Jesus and for every word that came out of His mouth. So He fed them, and they were satisfied.
But before they left, He fed them, all four thousand, a feast given to them from broken pieces of 7 loaves of bread and a few fish. He had compassion on them and did not want to send them home hungry. And He didn’t. “They ate as much as they wanted.” (Mark 8:8a)
How gently Jesus offers to enter our hungry lives and lead us toward satisfaction, satisfaction that brings wholeness to our entire being. No longer do we need to demand a sign from Him proving He is who He says He is. We know, because we’ve been hungry and He has fed us.
Have you noticed where your heart feels hungry lately? Where do you see Jesus with you in that? How have you been fed?
Are you still hungry?
Mark 8:1-13 (NLT)
Jesus Feeds Four Thousand
8 About this time another large crowd had gathered, and the people ran out of food again. Jesus called his disciples and told them, 2 “I feel sorry for these people. They have been here with me for three days, and they have nothing left to eat. 3 If I send them home hungry, they will faint along the way. For some of them have come a long distance.”
4 His disciples replied, “How are we supposed to find enough food to feed them out here in the wilderness?”
5 Jesus asked, “How much bread do you have?”
“Seven loaves,” they replied.
6 So Jesus told all the people to sit down on the ground. Then he took the seven loaves, thanked God for them, and broke them into pieces. He gave them to his disciples, who distributed the bread to the crowd. 7 A few small fish were found, too, so Jesus also blessed these and told the disciples to distribute them.
8 They ate as much as they wanted. Afterward, the disciples picked up seven large baskets of leftover food. 9 There were about 4,000 people in the crowd that day, and Jesus sent them home after they had eaten. 10 Immediately after this, he got into a boat with his disciples and crossed over to the region of Dalmanutha.
11 When the Pharisees heard that Jesus had arrived, they came and started to argue with him. Testing him, they demanded that he show them a miraculous sign from heaven to prove his authority.
12 When he heard this, he sighed deeply in his spirit and said, “Why do these people keep demanding a miraculous sign? I tell you the truth, I will not give this generation any such sign.” 13 So he got back into the boat and left them, and he crossed to the other side of the lake.
For Reflection and Prayer:
What phrase or word spoke to you as you listened/read?
What miraculous signs have you seen or are you waiting to see?
How do you respond to Jesus when He asks you to distribute the bread to others?
What message do you hear God speaking to you through this text?