This week, Intern Pastor Lori Fuller gives the message.
We know the story of where Jesus fed 5 thousand people with 5 loaves of bread and 2 fish and had enough to feed them all. We’re going to look at the next day after this happens. The people go looking for Jesus and wanted more “Bread. “However, Jesus responded with “You’ve come looking for me not because you saw God in my actions but because I fed you, filled your stomachs and for free.” In the end Jesus shares that I am the Bread of Life. The person who aligns with me, hungers no more and thirsts no more. Even though you have seen me in action just yesterday you do not believe in me.
How many of you have heard of the book of, “The Giving Tree” written by Shel Silverstein?
This story is about a boy and an apple tree who develops a relationship with one another. The tree is very “giving “and the boy evolves into a “taking“ teenager, man, then elderly man. We know in his childhood, the boy enjoys playing with the tree, climbing her trunk, swimming from her branches, and eating the apples and so on and on. Years pass and the boy grows older, he spends less time with the trees and only visits when he wants something at various times of his life. The tree gives him parts of herself, which he can transform into materials, such as money (from her apples), a house (from her branches), and a boat (from her trunk). With every stage of giving, “the Tree was happy.” In the end, he has grown up and is now an elderly man. And by now the tree has nothing left to give him. However, the elderly man is content to just sit on the stump.
I look at this story as the giving tree is Jesus. Jesus did the same thing for those whom he loved. Thankfully though Jesus did not stay as a stump.
Just like in the gospel today, the problem Jesus faced then and now is that people were shortsighted. People weren’t following Jesus because of his teaching as much as they were hoping for an easier lifestyle. Jesus had given them a starting point with the bread and fish. They followed him to the other side of the lake to see now if it would continue. The people were only looking to satisfy their immediate physical needs. They couldn’t even see how empty their souls were. Too many people just keep taking in the stuff of this world and don’t realize how empty it will prove in the end. The things of this world will never fill us. Jesus feeds our soul.
It’s about choosing to see and making this a priority. This leads me to ask you my friends, what are you thankful for?
Anyone brave enough to share what they’re thankful for today with everyone?
Now, let’s turn and look at the person closest to you and say, I’m thankful for you.
So when we ask ourselves where is God in the amidst of all this? Am I choosing to see or am I being shortsighted?
Let’s choose to see this Thanksgiving.