Not Enough?

15 When it was evening, the disciples came to Him and said, “This place is desolate and the hour is already [a]late; so send the crowds away, that they may go into the villages and buy food for themselves.” 16 But Jesus said to them, “They do not need to go away; you give them somethingto eat!” 17 They *said to Him, “We have here only five loaves and two fish.” 18 And He said, “Bring them here to Me.” 19 Ordering the [b]people to [c]sit down on the grass, He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up toward heaven, He blessed the food, and breaking the loaves He gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds, 20 and they all ate and were satisfied. They picked up what was left over of the broken pieces, twelve full baskets. 21 There were about five thousand men who ate, besides women and children.   Matthew 14:15-21....."God always blesses what starts out as 'not enough.' " Christine Caine

 

This past summer I listened as a missionary described something that happened in her ministry to Namibian children who spent most of their time in a garbage dump. She goes there at least once a week to teach them basic skills that they can get nowhere else, but also to share the love and truth of Christ. She always brings some kind of snack for them to eat, which means so much more than we, the well fed citizens of the west can ever understand. One week she brought apples, a real treat for them. She brought what she thought would be enough for the number that was usually there. When she arrived however, there were a number present beyond what she had estimated. She knew that it would be a devastating experience for any child to not get one of the apples. As she began to hand them out to the eager hands, she prayed that the Father would make sure that each child got an apple, knowing she didn't have enough. She began to give them out, and as the children came forward, she reached into the bag again and again for an apple, and each time, an apple was there. When the last child had come and received their apple, the bag was empty. God blessed what had begun as "not enough." He works miracles in ways both great and small. And we should never be confined by what we see as lack. Not where He is really in it. Yet I wonder if we see the depths of just how true this is?

In our western mind set of being focused on what is measurable, countable, and what we perceive as valuable, I think we keep our thinking of this miracle on the surface. He increases our finances, church attendance, and turns our lack into gain. These are not bad things, but our motives in them can be very mixed, and even if they're not, I think we limit the wonder of this promise and miracle. I believe His desire goes far beyond increasing our externals. I think He longs to increase and multiply what is happening in our inner lives. What we see as, even know to be, our very limited abilities and gifts.

This morning, I received a note from this same missionary lady, sharing that she often wonders about the fruit of her ministry in that garbage dump, and especially as to whether she possess the ability to really be used of Him there. I think such thoughts are in all of us....if we're honest enough to admit it. The truth is, none of us, not one, has the ability in ourselves to accomplish anything for Him. If we think we do, what we have accomplished is not eternal or lasting. It's just wood and stubble. We are all found in the group that is listed as "not enough." And that is just where we need to be, because it is there that Christ comes and takes what is not enough in ourselves and makes it "more than enough" in Him. The doorway to His miracles within us is to come to Him in our poverty and behold Him to reveal His riches to and in us. Is such happening in you and me today? Or, do we keep producing wood and stubble, all the while fooling ourselves into thinking it's really silver and gold? We need to come empty, and be made full. Beth Moore said that the rich young ruler came to Jesus with full hands and an empty heart. He left the same way. How often is this true of us?

Wherever we are today, can we believe that our lack of resources, whether outwardly or inwardly, is made more than enough by He who calls us to believe Him as our only Resource? We may feel ourselves to be in some kind of "garbage dump" right now. Can we trust that even there, He will prove Himself to be more than enough? Each week the missionary in Namibia goes again to the dump. That's where she ministers. And each week, the Father takes what is not enough, especially as she sees it concerning herself, and brings forth increase. Human eyes may not see it, but His do. And that should be, for all of us, more than enough.

Blessings,
Pastor O

 

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