I’m sitting at the table looking out to the snow that has been falling for hours. I’m in Indianapolis at my brother’s house, waiting to go to my first of two doctors’ appointments. There are a pair of blue jays in a tree right behind the house and after putting some almonds outside the sliding door, I am watching them eat. Everything is frozen and covered by at least six inches of snow (several feet where the drifts are) and yet, they are feasting.
I remember back to when Jim and I were newly married. One night, we were eating supper and discussing our finances. Or more accurately, our lack thereof. I was about seven months pregnant with Craig and unable to work. We had bills that were piling up and we knew I wouldn’t be able to return to work until after Craig was born.
After many frustrating minutes of trying to figure out what we were going to do, Jim began laughing. I’m sure the look on my face must have been priceless. Even Derek, who was two at the time, could feel the tension in the room and I’m sure that he thought Jim had flipped his lid. I know I did. My second thought was, yes, he’s figured out the answer to our strained budget.
But Jim merely pointed to the table before us and said, “Here we are, complaining about being broke, and we are. And yet, we are eating a feast fit for a king.”
I looked at the table before us. Sure enough, there were venison steaks, potatoes and corn, relish, rolls, most of which had come from Jim’s sister and her husband, Sue and John. We weren’t suffering…we were well fed and in fact, feasting on wonderful food.
Several years later, when Jim and I returned to church, we were sitting in our Sunday School class and someone read the following scripture:
Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? -Matthew 6:26
Most of what we were eating that night we did not work or earn, and yet, we had plenty and then some. Why? Because my in-laws saw a need and reached out to fill it.
How many of us have a freezer full of food and know someone who is struggling financially? What about a closet full of clothes that we hardly ever wear and yet there are those who are cold? What do you have today that you can share with someone in need? Remember when Jesus fed the crowd with a young boy’s lunch? (Matthew 14) No matter the size of our gift, God can use it to his good and for his glory. But we must be willing to give it to him. To let go of it, because in our hands, five loaves of bread and two fish are just that. But in the hands of the Lord, it’s enough to feed five thousand with food left over.