John 6: 4,5-13 – Feeding the Five Thousand
For this reason I fall on my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth receives its true name. I ask God from the wealth of his glory to give you power through his Spirit to be strong in your inner selves, and I pray that Christ will make his home in your hearts through faith. I pray that you may have your roots and foundation in love, so that you, together with all God’s people, may have the power to understand how broad and long, how high and deep, is Christ’s love. Yes, may you come to know his love—although it can never be fully known—and so be completely filled with the very nature of God.
To him who by means of his power working in us is able to do so much more than we can ever ask for, or even think of: to God be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus for all time, forever and ever! Amen
Jesus offered abundant food, feeding a crowd who hungered for hope and new ways of living. Through blessing their bread and fish, and blessing the space between them, a group of strangers, unknown to each other, now eat together as a family of God. Paul reminds the church in Ephesus that in Christ they belong to heaven and earth, to a holy space beyond their knowing that meets us in this very present moment. When Christ’s love finds a home in our hearts, there is an abundance of wisdom that will feed and nourish our everyday beyond our understanding. Just as the hungry crowd were filled and satiated, and connected as if a family, so will we be satisfied in our life, connect with each other, welcome, recognize and support each other as Christ calls us to do, if we allow the nature of God to dwell in our hearts. So much more than we can ever understand unfolds before us as we live each day with Christ central in our hearts.
Prepare us, O Listening One, as we share honestly with you.
This last week has been full and flown past.
From busyness to boredom, we are unsettled.
In success and delight, we celebrate.
So much comes before us, in both small and significant ways.
Our thoughts pile high and cover our worries.
We meet abundant problems, and miss the simple solutions.
We focus on what is not, rather than what is.
In this space, let us lay our worries before our Listening God.
We are so sorry that we miss your abundant care,
your wisdom that is present in our days,
your guidance through unexpected people,
your answers that echo in your natural world surrounding us.
Words of Assurance
God hears and watches and knows each of us,
and in abundant love, sees so much more than we can see,
offers so much more than we ask for
and heals our woundedness with a depth and breadth beyond our imagining.
Jesus says, “Take heart, it is I. Do not be afraid”
Commissioning and Benediction
Fill your heart with Christ’s love.
Let your soul sing with the Spirit of heaven and earth.
God offers a feast to address the hunger of an empty life.
So, join in this family of unexpected strangers and find belonging and purpose.
Let God do so much more than we can ever ask for
By believing, belonging and being God’s family.
Go in peace, restored by love and strengthened by faith.
© Rev Anne Hewitt 21/07/2021
this reflection & prayer may be shared as long as the original writer is credited.