Do you have faith in God? Or has that been something that has felt a little beyond your reach for some time?
You might be someone who has heard about this Jesus guy, but you’re not sure that following Him is for you.
One of the most powerful stories from the Bible must be where Jesus is busy preaching to a crowd of people and it starts to get quite late. Instead of breaking up the crowd and sending them home, Jesus looks at His disciples and says, “You feed them!”
The crowd has been described as 5000 people, although we see in some versions that it specifically says “5000 men as well as women and children”. So somewhere between 5000 and 15000 people you can imagine. “Feed them? Who us?”
Andrew, the much quieter brother of the more raucous Peter (who is always putting his foot in it) finds a young boy with some lunch and brings him to Jesus. There is not a lot written about Andrew in the Bible but the stories there are, are often about him bringing someone to Jesus.
The miracle of the lunch
Five small barley loaves and two fish. With the backdrop of 10 thousand plus people. It just seems completely ridiculous. Yet, instead of turning the boy away, Andrew takes him to Jesus, because he has seen Jesus do big things from not much at all.
Flashback to the very first miracle Jesus performs. He is at a wedding with His mom and some of His disciples and the wedding party runs out of wine. His mom pushes Him to the front and says He will save the day (even though Jesus didn’t really feel like it was time to reveal His power yet) and so He decides to respect and honour His mom. From jars of water, He creates the finest wine, so fine that the guests accuse the wedding part of saving the best til last.
Long story short, Jesus gives thanks for the food and He distributes it to the crowds and there are basketfulls of leftovers. God is not one to do things in small measure.
Where do I begin?
Returning to the statement I made at the start of this article, you might be someone who has been impressed by some of the stories you have heard about Jesus, but you’re not fully convinced. My advice? Give Him what you have.
If you have doubts, offer them to Jesus.
If you have fears, hand them over to God.
What ever uncertainty you may have, start with where you are, and move towards Him.
When someone is not sure whether they believe in God or not, I always encourage them to ask God if He is real and to connect with them. I believe that is one of the prayers He loves answering the most. And if there is no God, then it certainly can’t hurt to ask right.
But what if there is?
My encouragement as you read this, is to approach God from the place where you are currently at and just open your hands and invite Him to do what He will with what you offer Him. I did that decades ago and although it has not always been fun or simple or made sense all of the time, I have never looked back.
What have you got to lose?