You can't fit ministry into a box. The opportunity to bring heaven comes at the most inconvenient, unplanned, and unprepared times. That's difficult for a structured, "have my whole day planned out" person like me!
The feeding of the five thousand is a perfect example. The event is recorded in every gospel (Matthew 14:13-21; Mark 6:30-44; Luke 9:10-17; John 6:1-15). There is much to the story, but I want to layout a principle for your consideration.
"The greatest miracles await us on the other side of inconvenience."
We have the privilege of knowing the end of every Bible event, but the disciples didn't. Jesus did things at the most inconvenient times, but He only did what He saw the Father do.
Feeding of the
John the Baptist is just beheaded. Jesus is grieving. The disciples are tired from a long ministry trip. They all need a quiet place to rest and regroup. So they get in a boat and travel to the other side of the Sea of Galilee.
The crowds see Jesus step into the boat and follow him around the lake to the other side. It isn't a few hundred people either. By the time Jesus and His disciples arrive on the other side of the lake, the number of people swells to over ten thousand, probably more! This number includes men, women, and children.
For the disciples, that was not encouraging to see, especially since the point of the trip was to rest!
Can the timing be any worse?
“YOU Feed Them”
Jesus sees the crowd, has compassion for them, and welcomes them! The disciples have seen this before. It's going to be a long day.
Jesus spends the entire day speaking to the massive crowd about the Kingdom of God, and then heals those who are sick. That, in and of itself, must have been tiring.
The day ends with 10,000 starving people and no food in sight.
The disciples determine that they have done enough ministry for the day, church service was over, time for everyone to leave and go home.
They tell Jesus to send the crowd away. This sounds reasonable, practical, and even responsible.
Jesus disagrees. "Don't send the people away. You feed them."
I can only imagine the disciples saying, "Haha, good one, Jesus! The best joke of the day." "But you can't be serious about this? Are you serious!!?"
Jesus responds, "Yes, I am. YOU feed them."
What do you do when the Lord requires you to meet a need beyond your ability and financial means? When you're tired, exhausted, and have you have zero faith for? You just want ignore the request and call it a day!
Miracles Happen on the Other Side of Inconvenience.
We know how this story ends; over 10,000 people (more likely the actual number when you include women and children) are fed with two fish and five loaves of bread. Everyone leaves with their stomachs filled and their hearts full.
For Jesus and the disciples, what started as a day for rest, turns into revival!
Sometimes the most incredible miracles await us when we feel the most unqualified and inconvenienced. When we think we don't have it physically, emotionally, or spiritually. Sometimes simple obedience to the Lord carries all the faith needed for the miracle.
The disciples learned a life-changing lesson that day. The supernatural can come at the most inconvenient times.
"Inconvenience attracts miracles."
As Christ's Ekklesia, look for opportunities to serve others and meet needs. Respond to the promptings of the Spirit, even though you feel unqualified or inconvenienced.
When you sense the Lord speaking to you, requiring more than you think is humanly possible, reasonable, or convenient, step out in faith and do it. Offer Him what you have, with the little you have, even if all you have is five loaves and two fish.