Do you know the story of Jesus multiplying the loaves and fish?
One place it occurs in the Bible is Luke 9, and it goes like this:
“He said to them, “You give them something to eat.” And they said, “We have no more than five loaves and two fish, unless we go and buy food for all these people.” For there were about five thousand men. Then He said to His disciples, “Make them sit down in groups of fifty.” And they did so, and made them all sit down. Then He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, He blessed and broke them, and gave them to the disciples to set before the multitude. So they all ate and were filled, and twelve baskets of the leftover fragments were taken up by them.”
Often when we hear this story, we focus on the creative miracle that Jesus performed. It really was amazing! We don’t often take note of the other people in the story – the disciples, and the crowd.
Both the crowd and the disciples were fed by the creative miracle Jesus performed. However, the disciples received the food directly from the hands of Jesus, and the crowd received the food from the hands of the disciples. For the crowd, there was a middle man.
We have the option to be either part of the crowd, or a disciple.
The crowd was fed. They left their encounter with Jesus with a full belly, and good teaching. But the crowd doesn’t get to bring life. The crowd doesn’t get to feed others. Also, the crowd didn’t get to go hang out with Jesus after eating, the disciples did. The disciples heard the secrets of Jesus. They touched Him and felt Him and asked Him questions. They were endued with power and able to bring life to others just like Jesus! The crowd didn’t get to do that.
If you want to be a disciple, not part of the crowd, how do you do that?
Joshua 1:8 states “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.”
Psalm 35:28 states “And my tongue shall speak of Your righteousness And of Your praise all the day long.”
This word, translated here as “meditate” and “shall speak,” is defined as murmur, mutter, growl (like the sound of a harp when stricken, cooing of doves, and sighing of men); to speak, sing, celebrate; to meditate, remember.
Living this out means to constantly ask, “What are You saying, Jesus? What are you feeling? What are you thinking?” But it is also constantly singing songs to Jesus and hearing songs from Jesus. It is remembering what He has done and celebrating who He is.
Jesus is our friend that we can talk to and hear from all day. He wants to do everything with us and He wants us to do everything with Him. Day and Night. When you wake up. All day long. When you go to sleep. Day and Night. He is always available and willing to hear from You.
That’s what it looks like to be intentional. That’s what it looks like to choose Jesus for yourself, and be a disciple. You can let others feed you, or you can get it from Him yourself. When you go to Jesus yourself, you get more. You get more of Jesus, secrets that He shares that are just for You. You get encounters that are just for you.
Finally, when you encounter Him yourself, you can’t help but make noise! One of the definitions for meditate was “like a harp, speak, sing, celebrate.” In the story about the loaves and the fish, the disciples were able to feed others because they got the food directly from Jesus Himself. When we go to Jesus for our spiritual food, we will always have enough for others, too.
So, who do you want to be?