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“That isn’t necessary—you feed them.”

The Hope Center. A group of people that desperately want to fill the gap in the lives of people for the sake of the Gospel. It's a pretty special thing to get to be a part of! Just in the last couple of weeks I've seen life change as a result of the faithfulness of the people at the Hope Center. From compassion ministry needs being fully met, to providing a teenager with transportation to a new job, to countless people sharing their stories of how the Hope Center stepped into the gap for them in their darkest times. 


I want to share a new way the Hope Center will be serving one of our communities this summer. Starting next week, we're providing free lunch to our community in Richwood every Monday through the end of July. We've seen the need for this, and we're really excited to start offering it. If you're interested in learning more about this, don't hesitate to reach out at nextgen@hopecenterohio.org.


This week, I am reminded of a story from the Gospel of Matthew:


When He was here on the earth, Jesus often had a fun way of showing his disciples how to serve. In Matthew chapter 14, John the Baptist was killed, and when Jesus heard the news He tried to go to a remote area to be alone. However, the crowds heard where He was headed and "followed on foot from many towns." 


Now, I don't know about you, but if my friend and cousin were killed and I just wanted to be alone, then crowds of people followed me... I might be a bit annoyed. I'd probably be trying to lose them as I'm going! But, I am not Jesus. Verse 14 says: "Jesus saw the huge crowd as he stepped from the boat, and he had compassion on them and healed their sick." Showing compassion is something that probably would not be my go to in this situation Jesus found Himself in. 


This is a very good example of the character of Jesus, but it isn't what I want to focus on; it's merely context for what happens next. The crowd has followed Jesus to this remote place, they want to hear from Him and be with Him, and the Disciples come to Him with a problem. They say “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away so they can go to the villages and buy food for themselves.” 


Jesus sees an opportunity to teach and gives one of my favorite one-liners in the whole Bible: “That isn’t necessary—you feed them.” From here, most of us know the story: the disciples are worried because they only have five loaves of bread and two fish, Jesus takes their worry and lack of understanding and turns it into a feast feeding over 5,000 people. 


The thing I've always taken away from this story is: "Jesus has the power to take what we offer and make it into something incredible through faith." What I've recently had stuck out to me is Jesus' one-liner: "That isn't necessary -- you feed them." Before Jesus performed the miracle, He taught them the important lesson that they are to be the hands and feet of Jesus. 


What is the task Jesus has called you to that maybe seems too big for someone like you to fulfill? Think about this: what is the step I have been called to take in faith, that will make room for Jesus' mighty power to be shown? 


Jesus' words ring true for us. When we get anxious over what we think we can and can't do... Jesus says:

“That isn’t necessary—you feed them.”

“That isn’t necessary—you love them.”

“That isn’t necessary—you care for them.”

“That isn’t necessary—you pray for them.”

“That isn’t necessary—you walk with them.”


Just take the step, and watch what He does.





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