Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Resource Beyond Ourselves

Introduction by: Milfred Minatrea

Curtis Ferrell continues to bless me with the insights He is gleaning through God’s activity at South Memorial Church of God in New Castle, Indiana. This church continues an extensive Missional Journey as a congregation. Here are some of Curt’s most recent insights from Scripture:

I saw something new in scripture recently that gets me excited about where we are at in our Missional journey. Remember the story of Jesus feeding the five thousand? You can find it in several locations in the gospel. (Matthew 14:13-21; Mark 6:32-44; Luke 9:10-17) In each of these accounts Jesus tells his disciples, "You give them something to eat."

At first this seems like a cruel joke. Jesus knew that the disciples could see the need of the crowd. He knew they had compassion in their hearts for the crowd. He knew the disciples had almost nothing in physical resources. He knew the frustration in their hearts because they knew they couldn't meet the needs that they saw all around them. Why would Jesus tweak His disciples like this?

I believe it was because Jesus saw an even greater need. The disciples thought that they were depleted of resources. The disciples were blind to the REAL source of their resources. They were blind, spiritually, and needed to have their eyes opened.

Jesus could have called quail down from the sky, or prayed for manna, or asked the ravens to feed the people. He could have had a whirlwind pick up fish from the sea and drop them in the people's laps.

Instead, Jesus took what the disciples had (which really came from a child in the crowd), multiplied it and fed thousands of people. The disciples’ eyes were opened. They no longer thought they were their own source of resources. God could take whatever they had and supply answers to the needs that they saw in the world.

Fast-forward to Acts 3:1-10. Peter and John were on their way into the temple through the Beautiful Gate. A beggar cried out to them for money. They saw the need. They didn't have money. But they did have resources; the resources of heaven. The result was better than anyone could have imagined. Instead of giving the beggar a few coins, the beggar regained the use of his legs, God was praised, and a door was opened for the gospel to be shared.

As we become aware of the needs of the community around us, we may be tempted to think the needs are too great and our resources are too small. What we need to do is move from the hillside to the Beautiful Gate. We need to acknowledge the REAL source of our resources. It's time to get Missional!

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