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I will bless the Lord, Who has given me counsel; yes, my heart instructs me in the night seasons. I have set the Lord continually before me; because He is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. (Psalm 16:7-8, AMP)

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Always Enough with God
Published on 08-30-2013 , 3:03 PM

In John 6:1-13 we find the renowned episode where Jesus takes a few loves and some fish and provides sufficient food for 5,000 men and an uncounted number of women and children. In many ways the fact that the women and children were not counted makes this an even mightier miracle. Let us assume one woman or child for every man - a conservative estimate. That is 10,000 people all told! Five loaves of bread and two fish for 10,000 people!

Besides the excitement of the miracle, there is so much to learn from this passage. In verse 5, Jesus begins the miracle by expressing His concern for the crowd. "Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?" God anticipates our earthly needs.

Verse 6 goes on to tell us that he asked this question of Philip as a test, knowing ahead of time the great miracle he would do. You see, God does not ask questions to discover answers. He already knows those. He asks us questions so that He can turn our reliance from ourselves to Him.

Philip was amazed at the question that Jesus asked him out of the blue. It would take a half year's wages and still there would not be enough for anyone to get more than a bite, Philip replied. What he meant was: its impossible! Perhaps to give Jesus a more graphic picture of the impossibility of the task, Andre brought the few items of food in their possession and presented them to Jesus saying, "How far will they go among so many?" Sometimes we are faced with a rugged mountain we know we cannot climb or a wide chasm we know we cannot span. It is better to be like Andrew and at least bring the problem to Jesus, rather than like Philip whose brain was stuck on the impossibility of the problem.

But the Philips and the Andrews of the world do not stop God. Jesus gave them instructions to seat the people. Then he lifted the loaves of bread and gave thanks. He began breaking up the small loaves of bread, and breaking, and breaking, and breaking. Soon, enough bread was broken off from those five little loaves that everyone in that crowd of 10,000 souls was fed. With the addition of two fish broken into thousands of hearty portions, the people ate until they were stuffed.

Sometimes God works miracles without the involvement of man. But often, he includes people in His work. All we have to keep in mind is that God works miracles with the smallest of human contributions.

In this food-based miracle we also have a good example of how to work in tandem with God: give thanks. Jesus gave thanks before the first loaf of bread was broken. All our projects, whether mundane or holy, should begin with thanks to God: for being alive and for having the opportunity to be used by Him in His work.

But the impact of the miracle is not always truly understood until it is over. When everyone was done there was food left over. Jesus told them to gather up the uneaten pieces of bread so that nothing would be wasted. That is important to know. God does not waste anything. Nothing of God's work is ever "lost" or "wasted."
 
When the pieces were gathered up there was enough uneaten food to fill up twelve baskets. Twelve baskets of left-overs from five small barley loaves! We should always review God's overabundant provision and recognize that we are not the causative agent at work. Abundant provision is another reason to glorify and thank God. We should not let that opportunity pass us by when enjoying the bounty of God.