But He said to them, “How many loaves do you have? Go and see.” And when they found out they said, “Five, and two fish. Mark 6:38 NKJV
The Apostles came to Jesus. They told Jesus all the things they had done and what they taught. Jesus said to them, “Come aside by yourselves to a deserted place and rest awhile.”
There were a lot of people coming and going. They didn’t even have time to eat. They left in a boat to a deserted place by themselves. The people saw them leaving and followed. Jesus came out and saw a great multitude of people. He was moved with compassion for them. They were like sheep without a shepherd.
Jesus began to teach them. It got late. The disciples told Jesus to send the people away so they can go buy themselves some bread. Jesus answered and said, “You give them something to eat.” The disciples said to Jesus, “Shall we go and buy two hundred denarii worth of bread and give them something to eat?”
And Jesus said to them, “How many loaves do you have?” “Go and see.”
When they found out they said, “Five and two fish.”
Jesus looked up to heaven blessed. He broke the bread and the fish and distributed them among the people. When everyone had eaten they had twelve baskets full of leftovers. The bible tells us there were five thousand men who had eaten and even more counting women and children.
There are no second class citizens in the Body of Christ! The bible does not count the women and children in this account but Jesus died for them. Every promise God made is for all people who call on the name of the Lord!
I am God’s favorite! When He looks at me He sees a beloved child. Every interaction and aspect of our relationship is based on God’s great love for me.
Do you believe you are God’s favorite? You should. The Lord is not like us. He has no limitations. He has the capacity to love all each of us in a special way!
We are all God’s favorite. God’s favor rests upon you today!
I tell my wife all the time, “I’m God’s favorite”. I’m not trying to convince her I’m God’s favorite child. I am reminding myself!
If we really believed God’s favor rests upon us it would change the way we live. It would change the way we treat people!
Jesus taught His disciples to serve His people. Jesus wants you to serve people. So many of us wander around like sheep without a shepherd. Do not ask what Jesus would do. Look around and see what He is doing.
Spend time alone with the Lord. Then go and see what needs to be done so Jesus can meet the needs of His people!
Now He could do no mighty work there, except that He laid His hands on a few sick people and healed them. Mark 6:5 NKJV
Now He did not do many mighty works there because of their unbelief. Mathew 13:58
Jesus marveled at the unbelief of people in His hometown. Unbelief in Jesus is the dominant religion of our time!
Does this mean Jesus can only do mighty works when He is supported by the faith of His followers?
Some people believe in the theory of evolution even though there is no real evidence to support it. Some people believe a great explosion created the heavens and the Earth even though they cannot explain what caused the explosion.
People do not believe in the God of the Bible for two primary reasons. Either they do not want to believe (bias against God) or they have been deceived.
Unbelievers influence other people and we find ourselves living in a world that opposes the transforming work God wants to accomplish in us and through us!
God created the heavens and the Earth without the support of human faith. Jesus created Adam and Eve without anyone around to believe He could.
Jesus performs a miracle every time someone responds to Him in faith. There is one miracle Jesus cannot perform unless we believe in Him. Jesus cannot bring a person born dead in trespasses and sins to newness of life without faith in Him!
What is God’s will for people who live in this age of unbelief? The Lord wants us to believe we have been born separated from His love and protection by sin. God wants us to repent of our sin. He wants us to live by faith in Jesus Christ!
Jesus did no mighty works in His hometown because He knew the hearts of the people. Jesus knew they would not respond in faith regardless of the miracles they witnessed.
Jesus is God. He does not need our help. Jesus does want us to join with Him by praying for people who are in bondage to unbelief!
Jesus wants us to trust Him enough to believe He can save our friends and family members. Jesus wants to use us to share the message of salvation with people who have not born again unto everlasting life!
Can Jesus perform miracles even in the midst of unbelief? Yes He can. Jesus can use you to perform the greatest miracle of all. Jesus can use you to bring people out of bondage to unbelief.
Ask Jesus to give you a believing heart!
As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, He said to the ruler of the synagogue, “Do not be afraid only believe.” Mark 5:36 NKJV
A ruler of the synagogue named Jairus fell at Jesus’ feet. He begged Jesus saying, “My little daughter lies at the point of death. Come and lay your hands on her, that she may be healed, and she will live.”
Jesus went with Jairus but was distracted by a woman who had been ill for many years. She approached Jesus and touched Him.
Jairus was a member of the religious establishment. Why did He come to Jesus? Why did he beg Jesus to heal his daughter?
Those of us who have children know why. It was because Jairus loved his daughter. Jesus was his last desperate hope she would live.
Jairus was told, “Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the Teacher any longer?” But Jesus said to him, “Do not be afraid only believe.” Jairus did believe. Jesus raised his daughter from the dead!
The woman who approached Jesus and touched Him had exhausted all of her resources. Jesus was her last hope. She touched Jesus and was instantly healed. Her life and eternal destiny were forever changed.
Some of us have children lying near death today. We have exhausted our resources and strength trying to set them free from illness and spiritual death. Jesus wants us to bring them before Him in prayer today. Jesus can heal them!
The words Jesus spoke, “Do not be afraid only believe,” are for us. Jesus can bring healing and restoration into our lives today!
We live in a fallen world where sin and death afflict everyone. All of us sin. We all fall short of the glory of God. Each of us suffers ill health. We need Jesus today as much as Jairus his daughter and the woman who touched Jesus 2000 years ago did.
If you do not know Jesus, “Do not be afraid only believe.” Believe God sent His Son into the world so you can live in relationship with Him today. Believe you can spend eternity in the presence of God where there will be no pain, sorrow, sin or death!
If your child is ill or lost in sin, “Do not be afraid only believe.” Bring your beloved before Jesus in prayer. Believe Jesus can bring healing and restoration into your lives today!
When the women who had been ill reached out and touched Jesus He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace and be healed of your affliction.”
If you are suffering from sin or illness reach out to Jesus today. Your faith will make you well. Go in peace and be healed of your affliction. Jesus can heal your body and soul!
But He was in the stern, asleep on a pillow. And they awoke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?” Mark 4:38 NKJV
Jesus and the disciples were in a boat crossing the sea. Jesus was sleeping. Waves began to beat against the boat. It was filling with water. The disciples became fearful. They woke Jesus saying, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?”
Jesus arose and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace, be still!” The wind ceased and there was a great calm.
The disciples were experienced fishermen. Why were they so fearful? They spent years fishing these same waters. They had been in these kinds of windstorms before. Jesus was with them. Perhaps they did not yet fully understand that Jesus is God.
Maybe they had an intellectual understanding of Jesus’s divinity. They had after all left everything behind to follow Him. Maybe Jesus sleeping at such a time added to their anxiety.
When Jesus walked the upon Earth He was fully God. Jesus was also fully human. In His humanity he had needs. He needed to eat and sleep just like you and I do.
Jesus was not surprised by the windstorm. He took a nap knowing exactly what would happen. He was not surprised when the disciples became fearful. He knew them.
Jesus used the storm to reveal His divinity to His disciples. Jesus used the storm to demonstrate His authority over creation. Jesus used the storm to show His disciples they had nothing to fear when He was with them.
Jesus sits at the right hand of the Father today. He never sleeps. We have nothing to fear when Jesus is with us. Jesus is with us today!
You will experience times of trial and testing. There may be times when you feel as though you are perishing. The Lord wants you to know He is always concerned with your safety. Jesus never stops thinking about you. You are always on His mind!
Jesus wants you to remember Him!
Jesus wants you to remember His love for you is not impersonal. He does not just love people in general. He does not just care about the humans. Jesus loves you! He wants you to love Him! He cares about your life! He wants to live His life through you!
Jesus will be with you through the storms of life. He will be with you when the wind howls and the seas roar. He will also be with when your life is calm and quiet.
You have nothing to fear. The Great Shepherd is watching over His flock. Jesus is watching over you today!
By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 1 John 3:16 NKJV
Last night I fell asleep early. I dreamed I was playing with my oldest grandson. We began to tease each other and banter back and forth with each other. I lovingly called him a monkey duck. I repeated the words monkey duck again and again in my sleep.
I woke up with those words rolling off my lips. I laughed uncontrollably. I laughed so hard tears rolled down my cheeks. I laughed harder and longer than any other time in my life. I’m not sure why I laughed so hard. I had no explanation for my wife.
The realization of how much I love my family overwhelmed me. At that moment my heart was filled with peace and love!
I had fallen asleep in front of the tv. I watched a commercial. I was struck by the commercialism. I realized the world system is spiraling farther and farther from the perfection of God’s creation. But God filled my heart with peace and love as I slept!
Within days of my salvation I met with a group of men. We prayed for each other. I began to giggle. The giggle became roaring laughter. I laughed harder and longer than ever before. I didn’t understand why. I couldn’t explain it to the men surrounding me.
Jesus filled my heart with peace and love. The joy that filled my heart overflowed like a magnificent waterfall. It was not because I laughed so hard. It was because I met Jesus!
The first few months of my new life were filled with awe and wonder. I was drawn into a completely unexpectedly intimate relationship with Jesus. I discovered that the God of the bible is a personal God who loved me completely and unconditionally!
I was never told that I would experience the love of God in such powerful ways! I did not know the Lord would communicate with me through His Word, other people, the circumstances of life and ways so deeply personal I have difficulty verbalizing them!
I also began to see the world and other people in ways I never had before. As I type out this message I keenly aware of how much God’s love has changed my life!
This is the day we celebrate the virgin birth of our Lord and Savior! We can know and experience true love because Jesus laid down His life for us!
Jesus came to save the people we know and love. He came to save the people who pass us on the street as we rush off to work and home again. The world system is spiraling farther and farther from the perfection of God’s creation. But our love for other people can impact their lives!
Today is the day we celebrate the virgin birth of our Lord and Savior. Celebrate with the people you love. Share the love of God with the people you pass through life with. Rejoice and be glad. Jesus changed everything!
For there is born to you this day in the City of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger. Luke 2:11-12 NKJV
An angel appeared to shepherds keeping watch over their flocks. The glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid. The angel said to them, Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people.
Suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, and goodwill toward men!
Has the Lord ever given you a sign? In 1993 I asked God to bless my marriage. I felt a tingling sensation throughout my body. God gave me a sign that He would bless our marriage. He has blessed us. Our home is filled with love. Our hearts are full of hope!
An angel appeared before humble shepherds. The angel was not a sign to them. A host of heavenly servants gave praise to God and a blessing to mankind. It was not a sign to them. The sign was a baby wrapped in rags and sleeping in a place for animals.
The Lord came to the meek and humble as one of them!
The shepherds lived like migrant field workers. As the flocks ate up the grass they moved on to greener pastures. They worked long hours into the night protecting their livelihood. It was a hard life.
The Lord chose a young girl to mother His Son. He announced the birth of Jesus to the lowliest of working class people, why? God gives grace to the humble. He does not look at status or position. He looks deep into hearts for the secrets found in them.
The Lord saw in Mary and the shepherd’s hearts things no one else could see. He saw people of humility and character. He saw people who knew this world had nothing to offer them. The Lord saw people who longed for things only God could give them!
God is looking deep into our hearts for secret things only He can see. He is looking for people of humility and character. He is looking for people who know this world has nothing to offer us. God is looking for people who long for things only He can give us!
The world is full of temporal treasures. They have no eternal value. Jesus did not offer silver and gold when He came. Jesus will not bring them with Him when He returns. Jesus came to bring life so we could live it to the fullest.
Jesus will transform creation when He comes again so we can inherit the true riches of God’s Kingdom!
The days are evil. That does not mean our hearts cannot be full of love and hope. It does not mean we cannot celebrate Jesus’ birth with people we love. May the God of love and hope bless you and your loved ones today and every day!
Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the Earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth." Genesis 1:26 NKJV
When God created Adam and Eve He blessed them. He created them with the capacity to love and be loved. He created them to join the loving relationship He existed in since before time. God wanted them to have children and love them as much as He does.
God created us with the freedom to choose. He also created angels with the freedom to choose. One of God's most beautiful angels became jealous of Him. He wanted the power and authority that belongs to God. He wanted the worship only God is worthy to receive.
Satan convinced Adam and Eve God was a liar. He made them believe God was withholding something good from them. They chose to live outside of God's love and protection.
Adam and Eve sinned. A curse was pronounced. They did not live fruitful lives. Their lives ended in death. They did not rule over the Earth. Sin and death ruled over them.
God sent His Son wrapped in the body of a baby. It was the first Christmas gift. God sent Jesus to restore our freedom of choice.
"For there is born to you this day in the City of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord, "And this will be a sign to you. You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manager." And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God saying: "Glory to God in the highest, And on Earth peace, goodwill toward men!"
Today God is pronouncing a blessing on you!
Jesus came so you could receive His love and love Him. Jesus came so you could share His love with other people. Jesus came so you can live a fruitful life today!
Jesus is saying; "Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light."
I have spent many years laboring to keep my head up as my world spun out of control. I was heavy laden with burdens trials and troubles. What has changed? Has my life become a fairy tale of luxury and leisure? No, it has not!
I answered the Lord's call. Have you? I choose to live with an eternal perspective. Will you? I choose to live under God’s hand of love and protection today. Do you?
God loves you so much He sent Jesus to bring you back into His love and protection. Jesus loves the Father so much He came to the earth as a baby. Jesus surrendered His life at the cross so you can choose whom you will serve today. Choose wisely! Choose Jesus!
For unto us a child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of His government and peace There will be no end, Upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, To order it and establish it with judgment and justice From that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this. Isaiah 9:6-7 NKJV
Isaiah prophesied a wonderful gift to mankind wrapped in the body of a baby.
He is Jesus Christ the eternal Son of God. He is the Messiah the supernatural counselor. He brought with Him the words of eternal life. When He comes again He will rule with perfect wisdom.
In the fullness of time God sent His sent to be a perfect spotless sacrifice for us. The wisdom of man was made foolish. The strength of the mighty was broken!
A baby saving the world goes against every instinct and inclination of man’s collective heart. We value strength. God honors humility. The strong have always ruled over the weak. God gives grace to the humble and opposes the proud.
Men have been fueled by anger and hatred since the beginning of time. God is motivated by love!
Men of murder and violence have caused women children and captives to kneel before them throughout time. In the kingdom of God nothing could be more righteous and just than men of wisdom offering gifts and a sacrifice of worship to a baby.
At just the right time in His-story Jesus will return!
The train of His robe will fill the earth with peace. He will sit upon the throne of creation. His judgment will be final. His justice will prevail. His kingdom will never end. God will accomplish this. Man will have no part in it!
Why did Jesus come as a baby meek and mild? Maybe it was so we would realize how helpless we are. Maybe it helps us understand how foolish we are. Maybe we need an image of Jesus we can easily love and adore.
An image of the Lord that reveals His holiness power and wisdom would be too frightening for us!
Jesus has the power to transform hearts and lives! One day His wrath poured out in perfect love will transform creation!
God loves you. See Him for who He really is. Jesus is the God of love and grace. Jesus is the perfect gift given just for you at just the perfect time in His-story!
For whoever has, to him more will be given; but whoever does not have, even what He has will be taken away from Him. Mark 4:25 NKJV
My son had sleep apnea when he was a baby. When he stopped breathing my wife ran to his bed. It did not matter where he was. She always seemed to know when he wasn’t breathing. I was clueless even though my hearing is so much better than hers.
If that boy made a sound she heard it. She could hear him breathing. She could discern the difference between a quiet child and a child in distress. She even woke up in the middle of the night and listened to him.
If hearing God’s voice is a priority you will hear His voice. God may not speak to you in a way you can hear with your ears. He will speak to you in a way you can discern with your heart.
If walking by faith in Jesus Christ is a priority you will walk by faith. As you walk in faith God will add to your faith. Soon you will be running towards Christ in faith. Others will follow you to the Lord!
Lightning does not flash from the sky nor does the ground does shake every time God speaks. Jesus is the God of the marvelous and the miraculous. Jesus is also the God of the mundane details and routine of everyday living.
Maybe you think God does not speak to you. Maybe you think He only speaks to Pastors, Priests and Theologians.
If you read your bible and the words jump off the page at you or you go to church and the Pastors message speaks directly to where you are in your life, God is speaking to you.
Jesus wants to encourage us. He does not speak only to a special group of Christians. The Lord speaks to all people who call out to Him out of a sincere desire to know Him.
If you pray and someone comes to mind that you should pray for the Lord is speaking to you.
If you love your wife the way Christ loves the Church even though you do not always feel like you are in love, if you honor your husband just as the Word of God says to honor him even though he may not always act honorably you are walking by faith!
If you have ears to hear, hear what the Lord has to say to you today!
And when they could not come near Him because of the crowd, they uncovered the roof where He was. So when they had broken through, they let down the bed on which the paralytic was lying. When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven you.” Mark 2:4-5 NKJV
Jesus was preaching the Word of God to a house full of people. Four men brought a paralytic to be healed. The house was so full they could not enter. They climbed up on the roof and lowered the man to Jesus’ feet so he could be healed.
When we read this story we marvel at the faith of the four men who carried their friend to Jesus. What about the faith of the paralyzed man? Isn’t his faith just as amazing?
Was the paralyzed man carried to Jesus against his will? Or did he beg to be carried to Jesus? Did he argue with his friends as they cut a hole in the roof and lowered him down? Or was it his idea? Was he resentful or excited? Was his heart full of faith or fear?
The bible does not answer those questions. We do know we cannot beg borrow or steal faith from other people. Our faith moves us closer to Jesus. Only our faith in Jesus can save us!
The first night of my new life in Jesus I had a dream. I was outside of my grandfather’s home at night. I dodged searchlights and ran towards the house. I crawled up the steps leading to the doorway. My uncle Joe reached out his hand and pulled me to safety.
My uncle Joe had given his life to Jesus. He said the Lord put me on his heart. He did not know why but prayed for me in faith. God used him to usher me into the kingdom of God!
The four men who carried the paralytic to Jesus were not strangers. These five men must have lived in relationship together long before they broke through to Jesus. They loved one another. They believed Jesus loved them!
Why do I believe these men lived in relationship? They refused to let anything prevent them from bringing their beloved to Jesus!
Why do I believe they knew Jesus loved them? They knew Jesus would forgive any trespass, inconvenience or imposition. They knew Jesus forgives sin!
People have supported, prayed for and encouraged all of us. Their faith is admirable. Your faith is just as amazing!
Do not let anything prevent you from placing your beloved at Jesus’ feet in prayer. Don’t let anything keep you from breaking through to Jesus.
The breakthrough you seek is just a few short steps of faith away! Seek Jesus and your faith will make you well! Jesus forgives trespasses and sins 24/7!
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