The man who had first introduced Him to the world in the flesh - one of His best friends, His cousin - was just beheaded. He had just heard the news. Imagine how he was feeling. Just picture it...feel it.
When Jesus heard what had happened, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place. Hearing of this, the crowds followed him on foot from the towns. When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick.
As evening approached, the disciples came to him and said, "This is a remote place, and it's already getting late. Send the crowds away, so they can go to the villages and buy themselves some food."
Jesus replied, "They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat."
"We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish," they answered.
"Bring them here to me," he said. And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. 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 the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children. (Matthew 14:13-21)
Not only does He have compassion so much as to put aside His own grief, but He also has the power to do for me what I cannot fathom.
"We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish," and I am only one person.
"The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children." The amount of tasks I need to complete and bills I need to pay and people I need to spend quality time with are upwards in the number of this crowd Jesus fed that day - that's five thousand MEN...PLUS women and children, mind you!
Again, I say, ""We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish," and I am only one person with very little resources. The tasks before me are humanly impossible. As was supper for the crowd that day.
My Jesus is the same Jesus who welcomed the crowd, had compassion on them, healed their sick, and fed them so much out of a young boy's scraps of lunch that there were twelve basketfuls left over.
That's my story. That's my Jesus.
Is He your Jesus, too?
He can be. He wants to be.
Come to Him and He will welcome you with loving arms. He has already made the way.
And if you, like me, already know my Jesus, don't forget Who He is.
Do you have only five loaves of bread and two fish today...or less? Is your refrigerator bare? Is your gas tank on empty, literally and figuratively? Is there more month left at the end of your money---more bills than you can conceptualize how or when to pay?
He is the same Jesus today for you and me that He was so many suppers ago for that crowd and His disciples.
Trust Him. He will carry you through---with leftovers.
And to top it all off, do you know what He did next?
Hint: Go read Matthew 14:22-36 and come back here and share your thoughts with us in light of what I have shared here today.
(All scripture is NIV unless otherwise noted.)