My Need


Do not work for food that spoils, but food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. John 6:27

Jesus was an expert at creating something out of nothing. In John 6, Jesus’ teachings and miraculous healing had drawn a large crowd. This group of over five thousand people followed Jesus and his disciples to the far shore of Galilee. This story is about meeting a need- a need to be fed. Jesus had compassion on the crowd that was following him and told his disciples to feed them. The disciples, who were extremely uncomfortable and unprepared, focused on their limitations, rather than on His power.

“This is a remote place,” they said, “and it’s already very late.”

“We don’t have enough money… it would take more than half a year’s wages to feed this crowd,” they reasoned.

Jesus, knowing in advance what he was going to do, told the disciples to bring to Him what they had. All they could find were five loaves of bread and two fish that a young boy had in a sack lunch. The disciples were so focused on what they lacked, that they forgot they were with Jesus, the One who can take anything, even our inadequacies, and use them to do mighty things.

Jesus not only fed the five thousand with the bread and the fish, but he also taught them, nourishing their souls. In John 6:35, Jesus said, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” The people needed to be fed. The disciples could not get past that. In fact, if it were up to them, they would have dispersed the crowd and sent the people on their separate ways, but Jesus knew something they didn’t. He knew they needed to be filled with the Bread of Life and drink from the cup of Living Water. He wasn’t concerned with feeding their bodies, though meeting their physical need was His way of getting to their hearts. When the people did not even recognize their own need, Jesus knew their souls were hungry for what only He could offer.

For so many years I thought I needed children to be complete. God knew all I needed was Him. He knew that nothing could fill my soul but Jesus. So while I prayed and petitioned, making my requests known to Him daily, He was meeting my need.

When I heard silence and got angry, confused and impatient, He was meeting my need.

When I tried to find encouragement in everyone around me, but found that no one had the right words, He was meeting my need.

When I found myself in a season of waiting, He was meeting my need.

When all I could see was my own sadness and the pain of loss took my breath away, He was meeting my need.

In each and every one of these places- the silence, the loneliness, the waiting, the brokenness- Jesus was meeting my need, because all of it led me to Him. In the same way He looked on the crowd that day, He looked on me- with compassion- and He met my need. He gave me the nourishment my soul desired and helped me to see that He is the only One who can ever make me complete. He showed me that all I ever have to be is His. Taking all I had left- a wounded heart and a shattered plan- He met needs I wasn’t even aware I had.

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