Recently, with my youngest daughter, I read Mark’s account of the feeding of the 4000 recorded in chapter 8. It has stayed with me. I am reminded that Jesus cared about feeding the gathered multitude. They were far from home, hungry, and going to “faint on the way” unless they were fed and nourished. So, Jesus took a whopping seven loaves of bread and a few small fish and sufficiently fed the whole crowd! There were even left-overs! Presumably in the strength of the supplied meal, they made it safely to their homes.
And think about the diverse make-up of the crowd that day. Men and women, married and single, employed and unemployed, smart and… not so smart, the elderly and the young; “And they ate and were satisfied.” (Mk 8:8) All of them. Even the children were included in the Master’s meal plan.
This encourages my heart, for each week we who are far from home and hungry gather together. We must be fed or we will faint on the way. But the Good Shepherd is there and He wants to, even will, feed us. He will take the seemingly paltry loaves and fishes of a pastor’s sermon to sufficiently nourish His own sheep. All of them; even the children! Jesus loves to feed His own.
So let us come hungry so that we may leave full.
“The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul.” Psalm 23:1-3a.
Chuck Cook is the pastor of Grace Bible Church - Rolla.