Mark 6:30-44

Our devotions this Lenten season have been written by members of Faith Lutheran Church.  Today’s devotion is by Paul Baerenwald.  Also, if you would like to join our staff in praying the liturgy for Responsive Prayer/Suffrages just click here.


The apostles gathered around Jesus, and told him all that they had done and taught. He said to them, “Come away to a deserted place all by yourselves and rest a while.” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat. And they went away in the boat to a deserted place by themselves. Now many saw them going and recognized them, and they hurried there on foot from all the towns and arrived ahead of them. As he went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and he

began to teach them many things. When it grew late, his disciples came to him and said, “This is a deserted place, and the hour is now very late; send them away so that they may go into the surrounding country and villages and buy something for themselves to eat.” But he answered them, “You give them something to eat.” They said to him, “Are we to go and buy two hundred denarii worth of bread, and give it to them to eat?” And he said to them, “How many loaves have you? Go and see.” When they had found out, they said, “Five, and two fish.” Then he ordered them to get all the people to sit down in groups on the green grass. So they sat down in groups of hundreds and of fifties. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to his disciples to set before the people; and he divided the two fish among them all. And all ate and were filled; and they took up twelve baskets full of broken pieces and of the fish. Those who had eaten the loaves numbered five thousand men.  Mark 6:30-44


The disciples were tired and looking forward to rest – we can certainly empathize – yet when the crowd appeared, Jesus didn’t send them away, he had compassion on them.  He taught them.  They needed their shepherd; they needed nourishment for their souls and he provided.


When they needed nourishment for their bodies the disciples resisted, looking for an excuse.  Send them away.  It would be too expensive!  Yet in Christ all things are possible.  Five loaves and two fish became more than enough to feed 5000 – with leftovers!  It may not have looked like much but with God, little equals unlimited potential.


Like the disciples, we resist.  We have better things to do, we’re tired, it will be too expensive.  We search for excuses, but Christ insists, “You give them something to eat.”  He asks us to lay aside our objections and let him be our shepherd, providing for us what we need, and through his example he asks us to do the same for each other.  Have compassion.  Have faith!  Let him take what may seem insignificant and turn it into something astounding, just as he did with the bread and fish.


With God little is much.


Let us pray:  Lord God, break down our resistance.  Give us compassion to help those in need and let us see that through You all things are possible, that through You little is much.  Amen.


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