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Believe!

A man came from Baal-shalishah, bringing food from the first fruits to the man of God: twenty loaves of barley and fresh ears of grain in his sack. Elisha said, ‘Give it to the people and let them eat.’ But his servant said, ‘How can I set this before a hundred people?’ So he repeated, ‘Give it to the people and let them eat, for thus says the Lord, “They shall eat and have some left.” ’ He set it before them, they ate, and had some left, according to the word of the Lord. (2 Kings 4:42-44, NRSV)

God provides for us even when we do not understand how.

Here God feeds 100 people with 20 barley loaves and fresh ears of grain. We do not know how this meager amount of food will feed so many, but God is able to do far more than we can fathom.

Believe!

 

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Carry you

151207Comfort, O comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her that she has served her term, that her penalty is paid, that she has received from the LORD’S hand double for all her sins. A voice cries out: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. Then the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all people shall see it together, for the mouth of the LORD has spoken.” A voice says, “Cry out!” And I said, “What shall I cry?” All people are grass, their constancy is like the flower of the field. The grass withers, the flower fades, when the breath of the LORD blows upon it; surely the people are grass. The grass withers, the flower fades; but the word of our God will stand forever. Get you up to a high mountain, O Zion, herald of good tidings; lift up your voice with strength, O Jerusalem, herald of good tidings, lift it up, do not fear; say to the cities of Judah, “Here is your God!” See, the Lord GOD comes with might, and his arm rules for him; his reward is with him, and his recompense before him. He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms, and carry them in his bosom, and gently lead the mother sheep. (Isaiah 40:1-11, NRSV)

The grass withers and the flowers fade, but the word of God will stand forever!

All of the promises will never cease to exist. His love, grace and mercy will always be there for you.

He will feed you with the finest foods, and the word that is His, and He will gather you in His arms and carry you in His bosom.

He will care for you forever! Just as a shepherd cares for His sheep, you will be the apple of His eye, the one He cares for!

 

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bring together

Bring togetherFor thus says the LORD:
Sing aloud with gladness for Jacob,
and raise shouts for the chief of the nations;
proclaim, give praise, and say,
“Save, O LORD, your people,
the remnant of Israel.”
See, I am going to bring them from the land of the north,
and gather them from the farthest parts of the earth,
among them the blind and the lame,
those with child and those in labor, together;
a great company, they shall return here.
With weeping they shall come,
and with consolations I will lead them back,
I will let them walk by brooks of water,
in a straight path in which they shall not stumble;
for I have become a father to Israel,
and Ephraim is my firstborn.
(Jeremiah 31:7-9, NRSV)

Shout with a loud voice because God is going to ransom His chosen people from the ends of the earth and bring them together!

He will be with them and will water what needs water and feed what needs fed!

He will make certain we do not stumble and He will be with us!

God will bring the remnants together and we will be His people!

 

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Feed me

I would feed you with the finest of the wheat, and with honey from the rock I would satisfy you.” (Psalm 81:16, NRSV)

God tells us He will feed us, with the finest of wheat and honey from a rock.

God will give us everything we need and supply for our hunger!

He will feed you!

 

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compassion

In those days when there was again a great crowd without anything to eat, he called his disciples and said to them, “I have compassion for the crowd, because they have been with me now for three days and have nothing to eat. If I send them away hungry to their homes, they will faint on the way—and some of them have come from a great distance.” His disciples replied, “How can one feed these people with bread here in the desert?” He asked them, “How many loaves do you have?” They said, “Seven.” Then he ordered the crowd to sit down on the ground; and he took the seven loaves, and after giving thanks he broke them and gave them to his disciples to distribute; and they distributed them to the crowd. They had also a few small fish; and after blessing them, he ordered that these too should be distributed. They ate and were filled; and they took up the broken pieces left over, seven baskets full. Now there were about four thousand people. And he sent them away. And immediately he got into the boat with his disciples and went to the district of Dalmanutha. (Mark 8:1-10, NRSV)

As I read this story today, I was struck with the line, “I have compassion for the crowd…”

Jesus had compassion for them, because they had followed Him to listen to Him for 3 days and they had nothing to eat.

And then the disciples ask where the food is going to come from.

Do we not see that Jesus can do whatever He wants.

We get so hung up on what our reality is that we can not see things from God’s view.

All we really need is to see with His eyes, and have compassion on those around us and He will do marvelous things!

So live like Jesus and have compassion!

 

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what to do

rest areaThe apostles gathered around Jesus, and told him all that they had done and taught. He said to them, “Come away to a deserted place all by yourselves and rest a while.” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat. And they went away in the boat to a deserted place by themselves. Now many saw them going and recognized them, and they hurried there on foot from all the towns and arrived ahead of them. As he went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and he began to teach them many things. (Mark 6:30-34, NRSV)

Jesus called the disciples to come with Him, to a place where no one was, so they could rest. So they could connect with God.

They had done many things, and Jesus wanted them to gather to rest and reflect.

So they entered the boat, but many saw them and beat them around the lake.

So the plan for rest was not going to happen.

So at that point what do we do?

Do we tell the people to go away, because we were trying to rest?

Or do we help them and tell them the story of love and grace our savior gave us?

Not to say that rest is not important, but if we follow Jesus’ example, we tend to the needs of those gathered, and show them grace and love.

Rest will come, and sometimes we have to seek it early or later than we thought. And rest is important, because Jesus sought His quite time with God.

But rest will come, and the people need to see the love of God.

God will provide your needs, allow Him to use you!

 

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search

For thus says the Lord GOD: I myself will search for my sheep, and will seek them out. As shepherds seek out their flocks when they are among their scattered sheep, so I will seek out my sheep. I will rescue them from all the places to which they have been scattered on a day of clouds and thick darkness. I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from the countries, and will bring them into their own land; and I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, by the watercourses, and in all the inhabited parts of the land. I will feed them with good pasture, and the mountain heights of Israel shall be their pasture; there they shall lie down in good grazing land, and they shall feed on rich pasture on the mountains of Israel. I myself will be the shepherd of my sheep, and I will make them lie down, says the Lord GOD. I will seek the lost, and I will bring back the strayed, and I will bind up the injured, and I will strengthen the weak, but the fat and the strong I will destroy. I will feed them with justice. (Ezekiel 34:11-16, NRSV)

God will take care of you.

As a shepherd seeks out his sheep and finds them when they have wandered away.

When they think they know the best way to go, and the best places to feed, and the best other sheep to be with.

The shepherd finds them and brings them back to fold. Leaving 99 to go and find one, because you are that precious.

And as sheep we need to look out for the lambs, because as sheep if we stray the lambs will follow.

So do not stray, but if you do, know God will search for you!

 

 

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