It is always worth taking the time to read The Bible. God constantly wants to show us something. Earlier this week I was reading about Jesus feeding the five thousand in Matthew 14:13-21. As I was reading God reminded me that often Jesus does the unexpected. Let’s take a look at the story.
Jesus has just heard that his cousin, John the Baptist, has been beheaded, thanks to King Herod. Jesus is obviously upset by this news and seeks out some time alone.
When Jesus heard it, He withdrew from there privately in a boat to a solitary place. Matthew 14:13a AMPC.
I don’t know about you, but for me, when I hear some devastating news, I want to be by myself to process what I've just heard. I remember those first couple of days after Victoria was diagnosed with a brain tumour. In the hospital I'd often escape to a small room attached to the Ronald McDonald Family Room, and spent a lot of time there crying and praying. It was called ‘The Quiet Room.’ I was very grateful for that space.
But Jesus didn’t have the luxury of that quiet processing space. Everyone wanted to see Him and speak with Him.
But when the crowds heard of this, they followed Him on foot from the cities. Matthew 14:13b AMP.
The story goes on ...
So when Jesus landed he had a huge crowd waiting for him. Seeing so many people, his heart was deeply moved with compassion toward them, so he healed all the sick who were in the crowd. Matthew 14:14 TPT
Jesus barely had any time alone to start processing the grief of losing someone He loved, but He doesn’t appear to be bothered by it. Jesus does the unexpected. He continues to give practically to the people, meeting their needs. This is a wonderful example of Jesus' capacity to love others when He is in suffering.
John Maxwell says an interesting thing about Jesus' actions,
"One of the greatest remedies for our own suffering is serving others. Servant-leadership becomes a solution for both the one serving and the one being served." (The John Maxwell Leadership Bible, Page 1198)
After Jesus had healed many people, the disciples thought it was time for the crowds to go so Jesus' could have some space and rest.
Toward evening the disciples approached him. "We're out in the country and it's getting late. Dismiss the people so they can go to the villages and get some supper. Matthew 14:15 The Message
But Jesus still has the crowd on His mind, and is ready once again to do the unexpected.
"They don't need to leave," Jesus responded. "You can give them something to eat." Matthew 14:16 TPT
The disciples are a little perplexed as they know they don't have enough food to feed the people, which we find out later in the story numbered more than 5000.
And they said to Him, "We have here only five loaves and two fish." Matthew 14:17 NKJV
The disciples, probably like me if I was in that situation, could only see what they had in the 'natural.' But Jesus saw the potential in the supernatural.
Jesus said, "Bring them here." Then he had the people sit on the grass. He took the five loaves and two fish, lifted his face to heaven in prayer, blessed, broke, and gave the bread to the disciples. The disciples then gave the food to the congregation. They all ate their full. They gathered twelve baskets of leftovers. About five thousand were fed. Matthew 14:18-21 TPT
Jesus does the unexpected. He feeds more than five thousand people from the starting ingredients of five loaves of bread and two fish.
I don't really know, other than what the Scriptures tell us:
He looked up to heaven (showing His complete reliance on His Father - God).
Note; The Chosen a historical series, beautifully depicts Jesus looking up to heaven before He does a miracle.
He gave thanks to God (acknowledged that everything He has comes from The Father).
He broke the bread into pieces (Jesus took action with what was in His hand)
Jesus does the unexpected in how He provides food the five thousand. He is still doing the unexpected today in our lives, especially in this season of living with COVID-19.
For example, lets take a look at one of the things God values most, relationships. In my world, since the arrival of COVID-19, I have seen and experienced relationships that have deepened through shared experiences; relationships that have been restored as priorities shifted, and relationships that have become more authentic as pain surfaced and is processed. Jesus has done the unexpected. Once again.
What have you seen Jesus do, unexpectedly, in your world in this season?
Lets continue to keep our eyes on Jesus, trusting that He will carry on doing the unexpected, with provision, healing and restoration.
I'll finish with these lyrics from Hillsong United's Song, Shadow Step.
In every way, You never fail So have Your way, here God And I'll sing Your praise Fix my heart to Yours Ready for the unexpected Ready for what you will do next
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