When little is too much

“Here is a boy with five small barley loaves and two small fish, but how far will they go among so many?” John 6:9

Theologians, preachers and Bible teachers have suggested various explanations and interpretations for this narrative. What do we make of this account? Some see it as a miracle in which Jesus multiplied loaves and fishes. Some may find that hard to conceive of and some may find it hard to reconcile with the fact that Jesus refused to do work such a miracle at his temptations (see Matt. 4:3-4).

This could have been a sacramental meal. The language in the remainder of the chapter speaks about eating his flesh and drinking his blood. It could be that at this meal it was but a morsel, like the sacrament, that each person receives at the Lord’s Supper. Could it be that many in the crowd had made preparations for this nine-mile expedition and the presence and inspiration of Jesus turned a crowd of selfish men and women into a fellowship of sharers? I don’t know.
Reflect with me on Phillip’s probing, justified and reasonable question “Here is a boy with five small barley loaves and two small fish, but how far will they go among so many?”(Jn. 6:9) The most skillful homemaker or mother; or any normal human being faced with a problem of finding food(sufficient or otherwise) for 5000 hungry men, plus women and children (see Matthew 14:21) in a desert would know that five barley loaves and two fish could not be enough. Yet the Bible says everyone was fed and 12 baskets of scraps remained.
This awesome experience supports the belief that “Little is much when God is in it”. Thousands of tired and hungry people; a little boy sacrificially gave his cheap picnic lunch to meet an urgent need; Jesus accepted, blessed, and had it distributed.

The Midianites terrorized and impoverished the Israelites and God called a farmer Gideon to deliver them. Gideon recruited and army of 32,000 weak and God inspired him to reduce it to 300 strong (see Judg. 7:1-7). Many times there can be weakness in number when God is not in it! (see Lev. 26:8). When is “Little Much”? It is “MUCH” when: “Some trust in chariots and some in horses”, but God’s children “trust in the name of the LORD our God” (see Psa. 20:7). It is MUCH when we approach a mighty and awesome task that no one thinks we are capable of doing but with faith in God the impossible becomes possible. See how a little and insignificant weapon, accompanied by faith in God, slew the great and fearful Goliath (I Sam. 17:40- 49)? It is “MUCH” when what we give is inspired by our love of God and faith in God. The poor widow contributed all she had not for position or fame but for the work of God (see Mark 12: 42-44). Jesus is always concerned with what the giver retains after the gift was given.

Little is MUCH when our secret weapon is not wealth or fame, or contacts, or educational achievements but sincere and humble faith and trust in God. Kittie L. Suffield wrote:
In the harvest field now ripened
There’s a work for all to do;
Hark! The voice of God is calling,
To the harvest calling you.
Little is much when God is in it!
Labor not for wealth or fame;
There’s a crown, and you can win it,
If you go in Jesus’ name.
Thought: A godly man is only as strong as his allegiance to the Lord. – Today In The Word
Prayer Focus: Pray for faith to trust God as we give sacrificially.

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