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YOU feed them!

29 Feb

Our church has been reading “everyday, a daily journey through the New Testament” this year. This week, for the 2nd time, a story hit me the same way. Here’s the scene from Matthew 14:13-21 and Mark 6:30-43:

  • A crowd out on the hillside – been out all day listening to Jesus
  • Dinner time’s comin’
  • Closest restaurant – back in town
  • Solution – according to the disciples – send these people back to town so they can eat

Very good idea!  Send the people somewhere. Practical.  Doesn’t require much investment from me.

PROBLEM – it’s not the solution Jesus had. Jesus said, “YOU feed them!”     Oh.     Different story!   YOU feed them is Not… Invite someone to church.  It’s Not…Send someone a resource.  It’s Not…Send someone to a class. Nothing wrong with these things; they’re all good! Just not what Jesus had in mind when He said, “YOU feed them.”  Feeding people involves

  • interacting with people right where I am, some I might not even know.
  • contact with people up close right where I am
  • using my resources – in fact, in Mark the disciples complained about the cost of feeding the crowd.
  • seeing people as Jesus does – with compassion (Mark 6:34, Mt. 14:14).
  • putting aside my agenda and my plans (ouch!)
  • preparation!
  • always being ready to give an answer for the hope within me (1 Peter 3:15) right where I am
  • YOU feed them = the intersection of life and faith!

Our founding Pastor has often said that David’s preparation gave him confidence when he faced Goliath. I agree. So how can I be prepared to feed people when Jesus asks me to?

  • Pray 1st. When God starts the day, He leads the day. I give Him my agenda and submit to His.
  • Memorize God’s Word. God’s Word is exactly that – His Word.

    1. He promises to bless it and that it won’t return void, so that’s the best tool we have to share with people.
    2. Having it ready on my tongue gives the Holy Spirit an opportunity to bring the exact word someone needs to hear to my lips (Proverbs 25:11)
    3. I am so thankful for the heritage I have with Scripture Memory! When I was learning my ABC’s, I was learning a verse for each letter. To this day I can still say all 26 of those verses! (so if you’re “feeding” kids spiritually, keep pressing on in the Scripture Memory category. It’s something of eternal value! And it might be one of your biggest struggles if your house is like mine! :-))
  • Study God’s Word.

    1. Read through the Bible. Study entire books. Read a Proverb each day.
    2. It takes practice. It takes intentionality.
    3. Hebrews 5:13-14 says, “Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. 14 But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.

I saw this clip recently about the difference between the church in Russia and the church in China when communists took over. Something to think about! Watch the clip!

Resources for you to learn to feed yourself and others:
Bible Reading Plans
Bible Study journals for upper elementary and middle school kids. Adult version coming soon!

Hope you’re growing strong so you’re ready to feed those God puts in your life.
Let me know – Who are you feeding?

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Posted by on February 29, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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