So Nothing May Be Lost
When they were satisfied, he told his disciples, “Gather up the fragments left over, so that nothing may be lost.” So they gathered them up, and from the fragments of the five barley loaves, left by those who had eaten, they filled twelve baskets. When the people saw the sign that he had done, they began to say, “This is indeed the prophet who is to come into the world.”
When Jesus realized that they were about to come and take him by force to make him king, he withdrew again to the mountain by himself.
So That Nothing May Be Lost
In reading this passage, I am struck by how much bread was left over. Twelve full baskets! Just think: How many more people could have been there to hear Jesus speak and be filled with spiritual food and physical food? There was plenty of both to go around.
Two thousand years later, there is still plenty of Jesus to go around, but we as Christ- followers can seem less than enthusiastic about sharing our faith with others. I serve Eastern Illinois University, a community of 12,000 students. By our best estimates, less than 10 percent of EIU students actively participate in Christian fellowship.
As Jesus said, “the harvest is plenty.” And God has plenty of grace and love for all of us. Yet we seem reluctant to share. How many more could be filled and satisfied in a life of Christ if we were willing to take the bounty of what we have, and step out of our comfort zones to share?
The greatest stumbling block I have seen students face in sharing their faith is fear, specifically fear of rejection. They are too worried about their own pride to risk sharing the saving grace of Jesus with a friend. It is hard to put aside our pride. But Christ calls us to share and to serve the “lost.” And the “lost” is becoming a bigger and bigger group of people who have never been to church and don’t understand the saving grace of Jesus. Who will be willing to step out, and step up, to share the abundance of Christ’s love so that no one will be lost? Will you?
Gracious God: this very day I pray that you will give me the will and the way to share you with a friend. Help me not to hoard the faith, but to share willingly the abundant love you have given me with others. And I especially pray for our missionaries, who have devoted their lives to sharing you with the world. Amen.