Have you felt like the disciples being told by Jesus to give the crowds something to eat? Maybe you have and haven’t realized it. Let me try it like this: have you ever looked at your budget and see the income not lining up with the outgo (or to use the proper term, expenses)? I can tell you that I have felt like that at times.
Jesus is a bit funny like that. When the crowds followed him, and became hungry, the disciples came to Him explaining the problem: The people are hungry. Then their idea of a solution: send them away to find their own food. Jesus had a better solution: You feed them.
Sometimes when we look at our budget or whatever resource you are trying to manage that you seem to have enough of, you get that same sinking feeling that the disciples felt on that day. You may feel like the disciples with only a few small fish and couple of dinner rolls trying to feed what was probably more like 15,000 total people (5,000 was the count of the men alone). If you have ever felt like that, I have good news for you: In God’s economy, nothing makes sense. A couple of fish and some dinner rolls are not meant to feed 15,000 people, let alone yield 12 basketfuls of leftovers.
Roberta and I have witnessed these kinds of miracles more times than I can recount. Several times our budget appears to be so far in the red that apart from God, we would not make it. Nevertheless, God comes up with a miracle and we survive another month. Case in point: when Roberta was pregnant with Zane, we decided to save up as much money as possible so that she could stay at home as long as possible. She stopped working toward the end of December, and God met our needs for that month. In January, we started thinking about our savings and cutting expenses to stretch our savings as far as we could. Thanks to some unexpected income, we did not touch our saving in January, but we were afraid of what February would look like. In February, again we had unexpected income and we did not have to touch our savings. Last night, Roberta did our budget for March, and it is possible that we might not have to touch our savings again for a 3rd month in a row. Logically, it stands to reason that if Roberta is not working, we should be living off of our savings, but in God’s economy things don’t make sense. He provides more than enough to meet our daily needs.
This week, we had our annual business meeting at the church, and I love how our pastor recapped last year. He said that the church experienced the “miracle of daily bread.” Every day, the church had exactly what was needed, not enough for tomorrow, but enough for that day. In the midst of the miracle of daily bread, the church also went into a season of raising money and planting churches in Ethiopia. The goal was to raise enough money to plant 250 churches in 2 years. In 10 months, the church planted 316 churches and 92% of the pledges have been fulfilled. All this took place in the worst economy that the United States has seen for a long time!
God is the God of more than enough!
When you are looking at the resources, and your faith seems weak, remember that God’s economy does not make sense. He is the provider of all things!