Wherever we are, we Journey in this life, with Jesus.
During those days another large crowd gathered. Since they had nothing to eat, Jesus called his disciples to him and said, 2 “I have compassion for these people; they have already been with me three days and have nothing to eat. 3 If I send them home hungry, they will collapse on the way, because some of them have come a long distance.”
4 His disciples answered, “But where in this remote place can anyone get enough bread to feed them?”
5 “How many loaves do you have?” Jesus asked.
“Seven,” they replied.
6 He told the crowd to sit down on the ground. When he had taken the seven loaves and given thanks, he broke them and gave them to his disciples to distribute to the people, and they did so. 7 They had a few small fish as well; he gave thanks for them also and told the disciples to distribute them. 8 The people ate and were satisfied. Afterward the disciples picked up seven basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. 9 About four thousand were present. After he had sent them away, 10 he got into the boat with his disciples and went to the region of Dalmanutha.
11 The Pharisees came and began to question Jesus. To test him, they asked him for a sign from heaven. 12 He sighed deeply and said, “Why does this generation ask for a sign? Truly I tell you, no sign will be given to it.” 13 Then he left them, got back into the boat and crossed to the other side.
14 The disciples had forgotten to bring bread, except for one loaf they had with them in the boat. 15 “Be careful,” Jesus warned them. “Watch out for the yeast of the Pharisees and that of Herod.”
16 They discussed this with one another and said, “It is because we have no bread.”
17 Aware of their discussion, Jesus asked them: “Why are you talking about having no bread? Do you still not see or understand? Are your hearts hardened? 18 Do you have eyes but fail to see, and ears but fail to hear? And don’t you remember? 19 When I broke the five loaves for the five thousand, how many basketfuls of pieces did you pick up?”
“Twelve,” they replied.
20 “And when I broke the seven loaves for the four thousand, how many basketfuls of pieces did you pick up?”
They answered, “Seven.”
21 He said to them, “Do you still not understand?”
22 They came to Bethsaida, and some people brought a blind man and begged Jesus to touch him. 23 He took the blind man by the hand and led him outside the village. When he had spit on the man’s eyes and put his hands on him, Jesus asked, “Do you see anything?”
24 He looked up and said, “I see people; they look like trees walking around.”
25 Once more Jesus put his hands on the man’s eyes. Then his eyes were opened, his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly. 26 Jesus sent him home, saying, “Don’t even go into the village.”
27 Jesus and his disciples went on to the villages around Caesarea Philippi. On the way he asked them, “Who do people say I am?”
28 They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, one of the prophets.”
29 “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”
Peter answered, “You are the Messiah.”
30 Jesus warned them not to tell anyone about him.
31 He then began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and after three days rise again. 32 He spoke plainly about this, and Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him.
33 But when Jesus turned and looked at his disciples, he rebuked Peter. “Get behind me, Satan!” he said. “You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.”
34 Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.
35 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it. 36 What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? 37 Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?
38 If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.”
This Passage is Absolutely, Delightfully filled with ins and outs and dichotomies and Wisdom of Jesus.
I Corinthians 13
3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Jesus is working very diligently at communicating. Because Jesus has infinite compassion on His People. Making Jesus God. Jesus elevates us with His teachings. In the face of oncoming death, Jesus has compassion, goodness.
What surprises me, is to learn, again, Jesus clearly explains feeding the multitude happens on two occasions. There is no mistake, Jesus feeds His People to comfort them on two different days.
Jesus warns his disciples to carefully look at assumed goodness. Jesus is assuring His Beloved, regardless of miracles, troubles, questions of motive - Jesus is the One to Look for. Today, we are a little jaded. We look to see what people's motives are. Jesus is saying the One to follow is Jesus.
Beyond fairness, wonderful sunny skies - is what we can bring to God in all weather of life. Not for the reward, just to say, "Jesus Wants to Save The WORLD?!! What can I do, to contribute some?"
Insignificant what we can do to help Jesus?
Really, really, really then we have forgotten WHO JESUS IS. JESUS IS THE SON OF GOD. THE WORD of GOD INCARNATE AND MANIFEST. Jesus can take 7 loaves and feed 4 thousand. We might be able to give Jesus 7 loaves. Or maybe we only have 5 loaves. Jesus might feed... five thousand.
Or perhaps all we have is a kind word. Words according to God of faith, hope and Love - go Far.
Compassion to realize that when people deal with slow death - they are not on the same page as other people.
Maxine, my cousin and Ward, believed this profoundly. On the back of her bathroom door was this - "I went for a walk and saw a lazy, lazy man sitting in his lawn chair to rake his own leaves in a small circle. I shook my head internally and wondered why the world was so lazy with my diligence to exercise and maintain. My lap took me back past the same house, with the same man, and saw - this time - his crutches for his stroke. I realized - this time - the circles had moved and widened. This man was doing all he could to do what he could. "
Jesus says we look for a sign - Do we see compassion in ourselves?
Jesus talks about the effort to cure - Blindness - look twice.
I have to give myself talks on kindness and endurance. My husband has 3 damaged and terminally ill brain lobes. Most of the time I know what he will say, before he says his statement. Usually there will be a cuss word, or several. Usually there will be fear toward authority. Usually there will be a gross or crass joke. If we discuss my new cataract lens and operation this week, there will be a discussion on it being gross or sewn or uneven - at one point causing me to run to the mirror in horror of catastrophe. If the family gathers, we will hear racism of the 1960s and how the world was so very harsh. I will be told what I do is substandard. Every action I give will be questioned. We will discuss the same 60 or 70 highlight stories of our lives - endlessly.
This is Brain Death. And then suddenly in the middle of cussing, coarseness, fear, repetition, blaming, being told how inept I am, endless discussions of sports, in the middle of this - Edward will tell me he loves me. And will consent to run an errand with me. He will drive me to the eye doctor's office with the smooth, balance and reliability of the man who was such an amazing, amazing father to our two boys. When the old ray of pure Edward Light shines - I know that this is my job, in the Lord, to care for this man who was so wonderful - for so many years.
Has Edward fallen apart publicly. Yes, the day he was talking to himself - only making sense to himself. And I cried behind my sunglasses to see 3 men desert Edward permanently. Has he fallen where he embarrasses me publicly - yes. Does he do this all the time - Heavens, no. You have to live with him to see the internal crumbling. Or be his own, wonderful, mother, Judy, who sees and grieves with me.
I once saw a man who was remarkably similar to Edward about 10 years ago in the store Sam's. He was screaming bloody murder and caused all 100 shoppers in line to halt. Screaming of consumerism and garbage and stink of humanity. As he was there to shop. I turned to the woman behind me and asked, "What is THAT?" She said two words. "Brain Damage."
I saw the man later at Starbucks. He was no longer well cared for or well dressed. He was ill-kempt and unhappy and completely and utterly confused. He stood looking at the line of coffee orderers and the coffee sippers and did not know what to say or do. He stared at the ground and later walked towards the Assisted Living nearby. Alone. Silent. 90% of all brain damaged football players are divorced Before Brain Diagnosis.
No one who has done this many dinners with their children. This many Youth Ministry Missions for preteens and teens for their sons and Jesus - should be left to endure this by himself.
One day the cussing, cussing, cussing and coarse coarse jokes and the 70 stories will not repeat. But I will be here to tell his grandchildren of the dear man who Lives in Jesus.
Brain damage... is not like the Statue of Liberty falls over like an axe hit her. Brain Damage is the internal decay causing this Beloved Monument to lean and falter and look fine until a crumble occurs.
How did Jesus, as God, patiently endure and persist with what HE Knew Truth Is and have to explain and explain. Sometimes Jesus spoke sharply. Sometimes Jesus said, "Don't tell that part." With the hilarious comment of Jesus shaking His Beloved head, "Don't even go into the Village!" Jesus telling His Disciples - draw strength away from human concerns and see we are all going Home. In God's Plan. And Jesus continuing to do what God needs Him to do. Jesus IS - Our Hero.
Father God, give us oil in our lamp keep us "humming" for You Father God. Give us oil in our lamps, we pray. Give our loved ones You Word and keep us humming for You, Lord. Keep us humming in You, Jesus. Let us bless each other, our loved ones in You, our neighbors, our Church, our co-workers, our State and our Nation - upheld in Jesus the Lord. Amen.
♔ Lord Jesus Saves †