God has been speaking to me about “Loaves and Fishes” (Luke 9:10-17) miracles for seven years now, ever since He called us to do what was clearly impossible. God introduced me to the love of my life knowing it was going to take a miracle for us to be together.
Pearl and I knew God made us for each other soon after we met. The problem was that we were eight thousand miles apart. I was in Houston, Texas and she was living in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. Us getting married was actually even more impossible than it seemed to me at the time. I won’t go into the details but I will tell you that it was primarily a financial impossibility. When I look back today at what God did for us, I see miracles that were put into place even before we met.
God provided the miracles and today Pearl and I have been married for four and a half years, living here in Houston. I clearly remember acknowledging to God, in prayer, that there was no way I could even get enough money for a flight to South Africa, let alone take care of all of the legal red tape that it was going to take to get us together. But going to Him in prayer that way opened the doors for miracles to happen.
A Message of Hope
The “Fishes and Loaves” story is a message of hope. God is telling us that He can take what little we have in this life and stretch it, multiply it or grow it to meet our needs. When we go to Him with our problems, as our heavenly Father it is His desire to take care of us. But we must believe He can do it. We must believe that He can take our crumbs and turn them into a banquet. We must believe He can take our current finances and make them sufficient for our needs.
There is a temptation at this point to say, “yes, that’s true, but it is more complicated than that.” Maybe it is more complicated, but I do believe that it’s only as complicated as we make it. Some people think there is a long list of requirements we must meet before God will bless us with any kind of miracle, but our grace has already been paid for in advance. We do not need to live perfect lives before we can deserve God’s love and His miracles. That is why it is called Grace, because it is available to us even though we do not deserve it and we have not earned it.
I’m not God and I cannot speak for Him. But I have experienced many miracles in my lifetime and none of them were earned. None of them were deserved. There was nothing I did to try to get God to give me those miracles. I didn’t have to bargain with Him or make sacrifices to Him. All I ever did was go to Him with my needs and He met them for me with what little I had to work with.
Lately, Pearl and I have been working on a couple of acrylic paintings that represent the “Loaves and Fishes.” Part of the reason we are doing this is as an exercise to help remind us that God provides for our needs and does so miraculously when it’s necessary. The time it takes to paint has given us plenty of time to contemplate how God works in our lives.
One of the things I thought about as we painted was that there are a great many needs that God can meet this way. God can take up the slack whenever we fall short. Maybe we aren’t the most talented musicians in the world, He will take what we have an stretch it to fill a need. Maybe we don’t have the strongest bodies in the world, but God can take what little strength we do have and multiply it in a way that it covers all of our physical needs. Any area of our lives where we fall short, God is there for us to pick up the slack.
Think of that as you begin the week at the start of this new year. Whatever your needs are, wherever you fall short, you can go to God for help and He will provide, He will take care of you. In my opinion, that is the biggest difference between the Christianity that I live each day and the other religions of the world. I have a heavenly Father who actually DOES stuff for me. Praise God! And the good news is that He loves you just as much as He loves me and He will meet your needs if you ask Him to.