5,000 Dinner Guests and Not Enough Food


thanks for checking out the weekly
sermon from Church of the Resurrection I pray that God will use this message to
speak to you and help you grow in your faith journey if you’re in the KC area
I’d like to invite you to join us next week at one of our services or join us
in live worship online at cord org slash worship Church of the Resurrection is
one Church in multiple locations to learn more about the service times and
our ministries please visit Korg hope you enjoy this week’s message our
passage today is from the Gospel of Luke taking the disciples with him Jesus
withdrew privately to a city called Bethsaida when the crowds figured it out
they followed him he welcomed them spoke to them about God’s kingdom and healed
those who were sick when the day was almost over the twelve came to him and
said send the crowd away so that they can go to the nearby villages and
countryside and find lodging and food because we are in a deserted place he
replied you give them something to eat but they said we have no more than five
loaves of bread and two fish unless we go and buy food for all these people
they said this because about five thousand men were present jesus said to
his disciples seat them in groups of about fifty they did so and everyone was
seated he took the five loaves and the two fish looked up to heaven blessed
them broke them and gave them to the disciples to set before the crowd
everyone ate until they were full and the disciples filled twelve baskets with
the leftovers may God add a blessing to the reading hearing and understanding of
Scripture he may be seated the Gospel of Luke records seven meals that Jesus eats
with others discover your place at Jesus’s table breaking bread with Jesus food and place
in the Gospel of Luke I’d like to invite you to take your bulletin and you’ll
find on the back side a place to take notes and I’d love to invite you to
write down the things you want to remember and reflect upon in the coming
week I promise you this if you’re paying attention somewhere God will speak to
you in today’s text and today’s message beneath that you’ll find our daily
scripture readings and as a congregation we were reading through the Gospel of
Luke together during the season of Lent so what happens is on Monday you’ll have
a chance to reread the scripture from today and then every day thereafter
we’re gonna pick up where we left off the scripture in the Gospel of Luke last
week so we’re gonna start with Luke chapter 3 and we’re gonna go all the way
through Luke chapter 6 this week I want to encourage you to take the time to
read the Bible on your own if you don’t have a Bible we’ll give you one for free
stop by the connection point we’ll be happy to give one to you there so today
we turn to another gospel story about Jesus breaking bread with people this
entire sermon series during the season of Lent we’re looking at these seven
meals and there’s actually nine but two of them there’s just a nod to them in
the gospel but seven meals that Jesus at which Jesus is breaking bread with or
eating with people in his day the disciples Pharisees the multitudes and
and as we’re looking at these stories we’re remembering that some of the most
important events in our lives take place over meals so tonight is our birthday
celebration for our granddaughter Stella she is 6 years old today and so we’re
gonna gather together at 5 o’clock and you know what we’re gonna do we’re gonna
eat we’re gonna eat and then we’re gonna open presents or we might open presents
and eat I’m not sure which but we’re gonna we’re gonna do those two things
today and across the course of our life most of the you know powerful memories
we have somehow involve food and so in it was true in Jesus ministry so often
he’s eating with people breaking bread with them you remember the Latin for
breaking bread with someone his compañera
from which we have our word companion he was companioning with people as he was
breaking bread we turned today to a story of Jesus breaking bread with 5,000
people actually probably more than that 5,000 men plus women and children who
knows maybe 10,000 people but let’s just say 5,000 we’ll stick with that for a
second and as we think about this story it was so important that the Gospel
writers all included in their Gospels it’s the only miracle story that appears
in all four Gospels other than the resurrection of Christ in fact it
appears six times in the four Gospels because there
two other stories where Jesus or one other story where Jesus feeds this time
four thousand people instead of five matthew and mark record that account as
well so six feeding of thousands of people just a handful of loaves and fish
recorded in the gospels why was this story so important
that it was recorded in all four gospels why was it important to the early church
and then what does it mean for us today that’s we’re gonna try to understand
we’re gonna try to figure this out together now i want to begin by just
reminding you of where the story takes place it happens in Bethsaida and one of
my you know secret goals for you as a congregation is that you understand
biblical geography and you can point out various places on a map when you read
the Bible stories the gospel stories in particular so let’s take a look at the
map of the Holy Land and this this area to the north is called the Galilee this
area in the center is called Samaria in the time of Christ and this area to the
south is called Judea right in this area we find the city of Jerusalem this is
the Sea of Galilee this is the Jordan River and this is the Dead Sea
Mediterranean Sea over here all right so let’s just zoom in a little closer to
the Sea of Galilee to find out where the story takes place it takes place at
Bethsaida which is right here now the state is at the base of the Golan
Heights which are all heading up in this direction here and and Jesus home base
during the during his three years of public ministry was in Capernaum right
over here and what happened is on this particular occasion Jesus said to his
disciples let’s get away from the crowds for a while and they got into a boat and
they set sail across the Sea of Galilee and they followed the probably followed
the shoreline fairly closely and end up here and Bethsaida at the time we think
this Sea of Galilee actually came up a little further to the north and they got
off their boat and they intended it to sup somewhere around here to have rest
together but the problem is when you’re going across the Sea of Galilee like
this all of the people who live in this area can see that little boat going
across the Sea of Galilee it’s really not hard when you’re standing there you
can tell all the small boats going across the lake not that many on the
lake they see Jesus is heading that direction and what do they do they
decide to go where Jesus is going they want to see where Jesus is going they
want to be with Jesus they want to hear from Jesus they want to have their loved
ones healed by Jesus and so Jesus has gone to take a day of rest apart with
his disciples and instead thousands of people flock to where they are and they
show up there about the time that Jesus and His disciples show up so here’s a
little bit of the context of what’s hat let me just show you what this place
looks like there are two possible towns or sets of ruins that buy four witches
bethsaida we’re not really sure which but the place that the State of Israel
is called Bethsaida is this let’s run the video and I’ve been here a couple of
times some of you been there with me this is a tale or a hill where the old
ruins and you see in the background the Sea of Galilee and you see the hillside
to the right and we think to the right might have been where the crowds
gathered to eat this 5,000 people gathered that Jesus fed along the
hillsides you can picture them there and it’s a sort of remote place you don’t
see any other villages around them so the context for this within the
scriptures Jesus has sent out his disciples the twelve two by two he sent
them out to heal and to cast out demons and to teach about the kingdom of God so
they were out we don’t know how long they did this for but presumably several
weeks they come back and they’re excited to see Jesus and they’re exhausted
they’ve given themselves completely to the people for several weeks
Jesus meanwhile has not only been ministering to the crowds but he’s just
discovered that his friend his companion and his cousin John the Baptist has been
beheaded and so Jesus is grieving and experiencing a sadness while at the same
time undoubtedly a sense of burnout and so this is what he says according to
Mark’s Gospel he tells his disciples come away to a deserted place all by
yourselves and rest a while for many were coming and going and they had no
leisure even to eat and so they go to get away from the crowds they get in
their boat they head over to Bethsaida why best say to well this was the
hometown of Simon Peter of Andrew and Philip and so maybe it was for that
reason they’re heading this direction he’s gonna have a day off with them have
you ever felt burned out just exhausted like you just need a personal day or you
needed a day vacation or you need to get away because you have given everything
you have at your workplace or at other people or to your kids and you’ve got
nothing left and that’s that’s what they’re feeling and they show up over
here and when they get there there are 5,000 people waiting what are they
feeling at this time are they excited are they happy I’m guessing the
disciples we’re not happy I’m guessing the disciples were frustrated like
really seriously you can’t let us have one day by ourselves and and yet Jesus
responds in this way mark tells us that Jesus had compassion for them because
they were like sheep without a shepherd Luke tells us that he
welcome them spoke to them about God’s kingdom and healed those who were sick
the story reminds me of something so as you think about the story there’s about
4 different ways that you could preach this text so one of those might be to
focus on this idea of being weary and grieving and and and you know burned out
and yet you know still needing to give yourself to other people and and you
know some people would read this story today and say Jesus didn’t have very
good boundaries that he could have just said sorry folks I’m off today can’t
help you you know but he didn’t do that instead he was concerned for the people
who were there and this is one thing we noticed in Jesus ministry is Jesus is
always paying attention and much of the most important things that happened in
Jesus ministry are the interruptions that happen when he was planning on
doing something else and I’m gonna suggest to you that the same is true in
our lives today I think it was John Lennon who who wrote in a song life is
what happens to you and you’re busy making other plans and this is what I
find in my own life I have one day off a week my day off is Monday and so usually
I try to protect that pretty carefully to try to you know get stuff done that I
need to get done for a Livan and and spend time with her and time that just
recoup but Monday I got a phone call that one of our founding members was in
the hospital she was in ICU and she might not make it through the night and
so of course I wanted to go see her I wanted to be with her and but it kind of
threw in too you know threw a wrench and all of my
things I thought I was gonna get done that day and LaVon was great about it
she’s like no you need to go so when done to Kay you met senator the ICU and
sat with her and we had a great visit it was interesting one of the most
important things that happened in my life last week was showing up on my day
off to be with this one in the ICU I was so grateful that I did she’s still alive
although she may pass in the next day or two I was with her last night at the at
hospice house but but that was the last time I had a chance to have a
conversation with her because she can’t talk anymore she’s mostly just sleeping
and how how glad I was that I got the call but you know when I first got the
call I thought I got a million other things to get done here’s what I’m
saying is pay attention to the interruptions because sometimes the most
important things happen in the interruption is the most important
miracle story of Jesus that shows up in in addition to the resurrection all the
Gospels is one that happened when Jesus was busy with other plans to have a day
of retreat and quiet time away I occasionally levantese me for groceries
at the grocery store so I’ve shared some of this with you
before so a couple weeks ago I went to the grocery store right after work she
said I just need these three things just these three things but I went in the
grocery store I don’t go very often so when I walked through the elves like wow
look at all this cool stuff they have at the grocery store so I’m walking
although you know through the aisles I’m finding stuff I want to picked up you
know a hundred dollars worth of stuff and and and that wasn’t the thing that
set me so far back because I was an hour late getting home that night it was when
I walked through the grocery store a part of what I realized is there are
people around and I need to pay attention and so you know the first
person who caught me as I was walking in from the parking lot and began to talk
to me hey pastor at him and shared something with me you know several other
PA pastor I’m it’s good to see you and then you know one person who came up to
say I was really hoping I’d have a chance to talk to you sometime and then
poured out their heart you know and something they were walking through that
was painful and difficult you know and they’re in hen house or hi v– or Price
Chopper I think I’ve covered all the major change there you know we stopped
and prayed right in the aisle and what I’ve come to recognize is that you know
often those are what we call God incidences not just coincidences and so
paying attention you know might be the most important thing that I did all that
day was praying with that person standing in the aisle at the grocery
store so I want to encourage you to pay attention Jesus paid attention he didn’t
just send the people away he paid attention here’s the second thing I
would encourage you you know if we were preaching this sermon a different way we
might look at how this story parallels the stories in the Hebrew Bible or the
Old Testament so many of the things that Jesus does are paralleled by things that
happen in the Hebrew Bible so in second Kings there’s a story of Elisha who was
one of the great prophets of Israel there was Elijah and Elijah and Elisha
was had a hundred people who were there and he was tasked with feeding them he
only had 20 loaves of bread to feed those hundred people 20 loaves of bread
but somehow miraculously he was able to feed all hundred people with 20 loaves
of bread and afterwards they had leftovers that’s not familiar to you it
sounds a little bit like the story we have here except where Jesus didn’t have
20 loaves of bread to feed a hundred people he had five loaves of bread to
feed 5000 people what does that tell you about Jesus and Elijah like maybe one
greater than Elijah was in our midst right this story is a parallel but it’s
pointing towards what God does sometimes with the little that we have or we might
look at it in terms of Moses so much of Jesus life is paralleled in Moses
so Moses leads the children of Israel out of slavery in Egypt and he leads
them towards the promised land when they’re in the wilderness they spent 40
years there you remember the first thing that people start grumbling about what
are we gonna eat Moses what are we going to eat out here
and Moses goes to God got God like really what are they gonna eat help me
here and and God says don’t worry about it I got it covered
at night there’s gonna be a do that falls on the ground when when you wake
up in the morning you’re gonna see a white crystalline kind of substance on
the ground like coriander you’re gonna you’re gonna pick it up your people are
gonna pick it up and then they’re gonna be able to grind it they’re gonna make
bread out of it and and and that’s what they’re gonna eat for the next 40 years
they called it manna you remember what manna means in Hebrew it means what’s
that stuff that is what it means it means what’s that and so so you know
they what’s that for the next 40 years but God provided for the people in the
wilderness in a deserted places place God provided for them so that they were
they were no longer hungry Jesus is with these people in a deserted place outside
of Bethsaida and the people come and Jesus provides for them food
right so it’s harkening back to the Moses story in the wilderness and how
God provided for the people but Jesus then takes this this whole thing is sort
of a setup where he’s gonna teach them something about himself so in John
chapter 6 in the telling of the feeding of the 5,000 Jesus goes on to reference
Moses and he says he says this I am the bread of life like you’ve just eaten
bread and fish but I want you to know I am the bread of life
your ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness and yet they died I am The
Living bread that came down from heaven whoever eats of this bread will live
forever so the miracle of the feeding of the 5,000 was a way of pointing towards
something else a deeper truth that Christ satisfies the deepest longings of
our heart and he offers us life not only here and
now but life eternal in his kingdom so when we take the Eucharist the Eucharist
is one way of saying I’m receiving Christ the bread of life and he is
satisfying the deepest yearnings and longings of my heart for meaning and
purpose love joy grace hope that’s what Jesus brings and the giving of bread and
fish was just a way of pointing towards a deeper truth all right so those are
ways that we might preach this sermon but I really want to focus on a
different dimension of this story and it is seen in Luke chapter 9 beginning with
verse 13 listen to these words when the day was almost over
so Jesus had been had been teaching and preaching and healing all day long when
the day was almost over the twelve came to him the disciples and said send the
crowd away so that they can go to the nearby villages and countryside and find
lodging and food because we are in a deserted place
I want to pause there for a second I mean I’m guessing the disciples were
waiting to say that all day long like Jesus please just send them away I mean
we need some time can we just at least have the evening together maybe that’s
what they’re thinking I don’t know maybe they really are earnestly concerned that
there isn’t enough food for everybody and they’ve got a long distance to walk
the distance to walk from Capernaum to Bethsaida is about two hours from
Bethsaida to Tiberius it’s about four hours maybe five hours and so they got a
ways to go if they’re going back home so Jesus please send them away and jesus
replied will you say this with me let’s say together Jesus said you give them
something to eat you catch that that’s the point of the
sermon today okay it’s very simple jesus said to the disciples you give them
something to eat now in John’s account Philip speaks up and Philip says Lord we
can’t give them something to eat it would take six months wages not even
that wouldn’t even be enough to feed all of these people and then Jesus says well
just bring me what you have like it’s an impossible task bring me what you have
and so they brought him what little they had you remember they had five loaves
and two fish smoked fish dried fish we don’t know and they bring this to Jesus
so I yeah yeah Jesus this is what we got now we
just please send him away no I’m not gonna do that and then listen he takes
the bread he blesses it he breaks it and he gives it to the disciples it says now
go give this to the people now it’s hard to picture in my mind how this miracle
actually works so we have the five loaves and two fish and it feeds 5,000
people so so did they have baskets and miraculously they’re just more bread
shows up in the basket they tear it away and there’s more that shows up and more
fish and I don’t know I mean that’s that’s the way it’s read wait wait reads
and the Gospels so that may be exactly how it happened probably is how it
happened but you know some scholars read the story and they wonder if there
wasn’t another kind of miracle that was also taking place that of those 5,000
people there had to be some who actually planned in advance there had to be women
who were there with the men who planned in advance and they brought you know
baskets of food to share because the guys weren’t thinking about it and so
there was there was was food that some of them had and they
were gonna keep it to themselves but instead of keeping it to themselves they
watched Jesus and disciples give everything they had to feed other people
they heard Jesus say you know give away what you have to feed other people and
all of a sudden their hearts were changed and the some of those people
opened up their picnic baskets and decided that they’d give away what they
had and others gave away what they had and some who lived in b’seder ran to the
town and got all the food they could find in their cupboards and they brought
it out to sow so there was probably some combination of something supernatural
that was happening and then something miraculous that was happening in the
hearts of people were instead of trying to hoard what they had and keep it to
themselves they decided to give away whatever they had and you get to the end
of the meal and you remember the disciples had all of this food left over
when they all gave what they had so this is a beautiful story about about taking
the loaves and the fish that you have what a little bit you have and and
giving it to God surrendering that to God to be used to help feed somebody
else to help somebody else with their needs and then how God multiplies that
and somehow everybody is satisfied in the end there’s no gospel song that’s
not that old probably 3040 years old Delores nicknamed her nickname as mom
Winans wrote this song it’s called ordinary people in the first two lines
it’s all about this the story goes like this you probably heard it before just
ordinary people God uses ordinary people he chooses people just like me and you
who are willing to do as he commands God uses people that will give him all no
matter how small your all may seem to you because little becomes much as we
place it in the Masters hands this week I went to have lunch at film is kitchen
at 31st and Troost I don’t know if you’ve been down that way recently a lot
of changes happening in that area and a really great place to eat at fellas
kitchen so I went down there and had a chance to sit with father Justin
Matthews an Orthodox priest who runs reconciliation services there which is a
ministry that’s aimed at bringing healing in what has been obliged and
hurt wounded part of our city Troost has been the historic dividing line between
people rich and poor black and white and and long before that even I learned this
week and so in this place they have created a ministry to bring
reconciliation among people to heal the divisions in our races genders
socioeconomic status to heal the the divisions that happen among people even
of the same people groups we find divisions to to bring healing in mental
health to people have been traumatized and experience pain children who grew up
in homes where there were no parents people who lived in communities where
there was violence all of these are issues that are being faced here and
Reconciliation services was designed to try to bring healing there but but in
the front of reckon say ssin services is thalmus kitchen a really awesome place
to eat place I hope you’ll stop by and eat soon and I wanted you to hear just a
little bit about their vision for Thelma’s kitchen and what they’re doing
this is father Justin Matthews take a listen so thalmus kitchen is a gathering
place for everyone in the community east and west black and white ritm or trying
to bring people together again which is the foundation for a relationship when
people come in they’re gonna say welcome to thelma’s have you been here before
if you have money you can donate the suggested price or pay it forward by
donating more if you don’t have that much you can donate what you can we have
a minimum of three dollars but if you don’t have three dollars we’re not gonna
turn you away we actually ask you to volunteer and help us run the restaurant
for about a half hour and in that way no one walks away hungry and we’re
extending the kind of care and affordability that the community really
needs in order to reveal its strengths and your food is great it is five stars
on Yelp right we’re a five-star yelp rated restaurant on Troost that’s
awesome this really actually is delicious this is a great meal so when
people are working they’re donating their time what are they doing it so
people come in whether they’re they’re homeless or whether they work in the
area and anybody has the opportunity to
volunteer when folks are what we call walk-in volunteers they’re doing things
like bussing tables or helping keep the neighborhood clean we have hundreds of
volunteers every year who actually help us run the restaurant we only have two
full-time staff so we rely on volunteers from every walk of life every meal that
we serve is actually providing for case management Social Services trauma
therapy and food for the community you know I love where Jesus says to the
disciples you give them something to eat and requiring of them to have the faith
and even to find the resources to be able to do the work of the gospel I love
this that by breaking bread together they’re bringing healing to the
community reconciling people to each other as you break bread with people who
maybe you’ve never met before as you’re paying for your food you’re making
possible ministries that are happening to bring healing to other folks people
can come in who can’t afford anything and give their time and and it begins to
paint a picture of the kind of meals that Jesus broke with our bread that
Jesus broke with people and I want to encourage you to stop by 31st and Troost
and to have a meal at Thelma’s kitchen I want to encourage you to donate if you
can more than enough for your meal so you might pay for someone else’s meal
now I want to encourage you to think about getting involved there I think
father Matthews is with us today or you here somewhere
Justin father Justin right back would you stand thank you for the great work
that you are doing and I’m hoping if you’re interested in
finding out more can you stick around for a few minutes after worship and just
stay right over here in this area come by and see him find out more about it
I’d love to see you get plugged in and involved in this ministry that is
changing our city it’s awesome so I asked father Justin tell me how many
clients do you serve over the course of a year you know how many said just take
a guess based on the biblical story we talked about today 5,000 5,000 clients
25,000 meals I just thought how cool is that this is this story being lived out
in the heart of our community alright so as we were talking he was telling me
about Felmy that’s named after ‘thomas kitchen you saw a picture of her in
their mural there and so he was telling me the story of Falmouth Ella lived
around the 31st introduced area she lived in section 8 housing she’s an
african-american woman I looked like she was about four foot nine four foot ten
pretty short and lived in Section eight housing but had a heart for the people
who were there who were homeless and had less than she had and so when she saw
somebody who needed something to eat she would invite them into her home and she
would prepare meal for them and this became a pattern in her life you know
whether it was people were homeless or prostitutes or people are struggling
just to make ends meet anybody was hungry she would take him into her into
her apartment she would feed them and as this word got around that there was this
woman who was doing what Jesus literally said you give them something to eat out
of the little that she had there was a fellow who lived out in South Johnson
County a Leawood or Overland Park I think he might have lived in Leawood his
name was David and David was a young guy he was in financial services Thelma was
pretty short David was really tall like he was about six foot three or so and
and he heard about this and he started taking groceries down to Felmy to help
her feed people and then she began he began helping her prepare food and and
and they began serving even more people and began to have dreams about how they
could prepare a place a building where they could serve even more people than
that in the process of doing this these two people six foot three and four foot
nine or ten and you know ten years difference in age fell in love with each
other this is a picture of them this is David and Thelma David eventually left
his job in the suburbs and he and Thelma bought this building where a thelma’s
kitchen is today and they moved into part of it and they opened up the
kitchen they called it Grace’s kitchen and they invited people to to come and
eat more people come and eat hey I love this you
know David brought what he had to bring to the table and Thelma brought what she
had to bring to the table and eventually David felt called to ministry I mean
years later he felt called to to be a priest he was already in ministry but
felt called to be a priest in the in the Greek Orthodox tradition and went to
seminary and here’s a picture of them this as you can tell years have gone by
now and father Alexei and and is now he’s
known now in Thelma Thelma died in 2012 left a huge mark on the city a woman who
lived in section 8 housing who transformed her community but she took
the little she had the five loaves and the two fish and she gave it away and
somehow she was filled and there was joy and she found life in that so later
after Thelma had passed graces kitchen was renamed and transformed to what it
is today renamed Thelma’s kitchen in honor of her
and and you see there when you walk in this mural over this is the image that’s
there in the restaurant and I love the halo behind her you see that halo and
you know she’s a saint in this place father Justin said she’s our Saint and
and I think about in some of you been in Orthodox buildings where their icons and
and often on the side walls they’ll be icons of local Saints and this is the
local Saint here who inspires you when you walk in when you hear you’re stuck
here her story you know she’s once more beckoning as
Jesus did you give them something to eat are you paying attention are you willing
to share the little that you have to be able to bless someone else I’m reminded
of the words of Isaiah who said this you know what is it that God is looking for
he asked is he not looking for you to share your bread with the hungry and
bring the homeless poor into your house which was what Felmy was doing covering
the naked when you see them is he not looking for you to stop hiding from your
own family who are in need if you do those things then your light will break
out like the dawn and you will be healed quickly your own righteousness will walk
before you and the Lord’s glory will be your rear guard then you will call in
the Lord will answer you will cry for help and God will say I’m here so you do
these things you care for people who are in need and you’re gonna find that God
is there for you well how is God there for you like I’ve never had God show up
as an angel I mean not not a winged you know
Ultra you know glorious figure I’ve never heard God’s audible voice though I
hear God speaking my heart a lot and in my mind the whisper of God the way God
usually shows up to help me it’s through other people so here’s how it works you
give what you have away you you share with other people in need you stop to
help people and what you find is that blessing comes back to you and other
people are also giving to eat to those who are in need you become the one who’s
the recipient somehow in this exchange of blessing to be a blessing and giving
and receiving we find all of our needs are met this is how it works
now this miracle I see all the time as you’re feeding people here at
resurrection literally food at certain times so we have our Super Bowl food
drive we just had it a few weeks ago you brought in 15 tons of food in in
groceries that you actually carry it in here from the grocery store and then you
gave fifty three thousand dollars which at harvesters at sixteen cents a pound
would purchase another up to three hundred thousand our three hundred tons
of food right so now there’s three hundred fifteen tons of food potentially
what we do is we put that on deposit for area food pantries and then they can
purchase the food that they need cheese at one point or meat or vegetables or
whatever it might be and we have a chance to share what we had with other
people so we have a team of people who volunteer to go and deliver this food as
it’s needed we store and then deliver it wherever it’s needed and I thought you
might enjoy hearing from some of these folks because these are people who have
heard God’s say Jesus say to them you give them something to eat and they’re
taking what you gave and giving it to others take a listen today we’ve got
nine pallets and about about twelve hundred pounds in each pallet so close
to five tons there is a food shortage for a lot of people and this just helps
tremendously for individuals and families that need that
food during the week that they can come to these pantries these pantries are
really awesome most of this food came from the Super Bowl food drive that we
had right after Christmas and some of its purchased food that we’ve got from
the donation Castro Nation two people gave and then also the food that people
dropped off at the church well it’s obvious when you go to some of these
neighborhood food pantries and see the empty shelves and you see people online
waiting to get food and talk to the food pantry coordinators and there so people
feel like they’re blessing us by their need let’s serve the community and on
the back of our shirts we have Matthews 25 verse 35 that tells that story that’s
really why I got involved and I’ve been involved in it since it’s kind of a
passion very blessed to be part of this church and have found this church to
have such an outreach to the community that are there to help people to serve
just as Jesus wanted us to do serve people so on the back of their t-shirts
Matthew 25:35 it’s the parable of the sheep and the goats where Jesus says you
know these words because you’ve heard me preach them many times the Last
Judgement and he says to the Sheep those who you know go to heaven he says I was
hungry and you gave me something to eat you give them something to eat I was
hungry and you gave me something when did we see you hungry Lord every time
you help somebody else who was in need I took it as you were helping me right
this is paying attention it’s the story of this feeding of the 5,000 I want to
give you one last illustration and it will close so it’s not always food that
we’re giving when Jesus says you give them something to eat sometimes it’s
intangible things it’s love it’s care it’s compassion sometimes it’s it’s
counseling or sometimes it’s it’s jobs or you know a host of different things
so this week this week I had the privilege of burying my aunt Carol
Mitchell we had the graveside service that we came here had a memorial service
these flowers here are from her memorial services was Friday a remarkable woman I
want to tell you just a little bit about her so here’s a picture by the way and
she was a part of our congregation she was a schoolteacher she spent 34 years
teaching cool she taught reading and English and
she taught at all levels so she taught in Europe at NATO schools when her first
husband they were deployed there she taught elementary school middle school
and high school but her passion was middle school so she taught in the away
the school district starting when they opened Frontier Trail middle school at
she taught there for 18 years and for her Jesus saying you give them something
to eat was teaching children how to read and write
it was investing in these children and giving what she had what she had to
offer wasn’t you know bread and and and wine or fish
she had the capacity to teach people how to read she did that for 18 years in
Olathe and then she retired when her granddaughter was born her first
grandchild Lilly was born I was about 13 or 14 years ago and and she decided she
would pour into her grandfather there was Lilly and then Brayden came along
but but as she was caring for her grandchildren she also felt that there
was more that she had more capacity she had to give and so she began working
with our partner school at quinndero we have nine partner elementary schools
throughout Kansas City in the lowest income communities and we offer tutoring
and we rehab the schools and provide books and free beds and all kinds of
stuff at each of these schools so she began working in quinndero
and she began going there to tutor children these kids are coming into
school a grade level behind sometimes to grade levels behind and she begins
teaching and tutoring them she’s retired but she’s giving her time to do this and
then she moves beyond that to our she continues that and she volunteers with
the bookmobile and our bookmobiles parked outside here today and today you
have a chance to buy books for the bookmobile after the service is over
with and last year you gave away about 67 thousand books to children here in
Kansas City and so she starts providing books and then she starts going to
volunteer to make sure the children she was teaching how to read and write could
have a book to read when they got home and then she decided at some point you
know it’s not just little children there’s other people who need to know
how to read and write and so she went down to volunteer at Hope faith in
Kansas City Missouri with homeless people and she begins teaching these
guys how to read and write some of these guys for the first time learning how to
write their own name then when some of those folks want to start the same
ministry in Kansas City Kansas through avenue of life she went to join them
over there and she continued to teach men how to read and write one day she
was walking in the first time she went to volunteer at Hope faith she walked in
and there was a man named Andre who real tall guy he had you know his own
share of struggles in life and he he now was working at Hope faith and he was the
person who helped volunteers get connected and so Andre takes takes
Carroll around to see hope faith and and he says you know so what are you doing
she says one retired but I’m a schoolteacher and he saw how that’s
great he says you know I always dreamt of
going to college when I was younger but that’s just not in the cards for me she
said well why not why can’t you go to college he said you know I couldn’t I
couldn’t pass the entrance exams for one thing and then you know I don’t have the
resources to do that she said I could help you pass the entrance exams and
they want to take the entrance exams in and he failed he wasn’t able to get in
and she said you know what we can work on this and so she tutored him until he
went back and he took the entrance exams and he got into Metropolitan Community
College and he said well that’s great but I can’t and I can’t pay for school
she said I’m gonna pay for your school it’s sitting I didn’t know this story I
mean all these years I she’s been my aunt I didn’t know that she’d done this
until after she died I heard this story oh she paid for his Community College he
said she helped me pass English to English courses I wouldn’t have passed
when I couldn’t get through math she found somebody resurrection who taught
math and he came and tutored me in math she helped me with my speech class she
edited all of my papers that I turned in and she helped me graduate and she paid
for my college to graduate with my associates degree then I got to go on to
get my bachelor’s degree in this spring he’s graduating with his bachelor’s in
business so I saw him I hadn’t seen him in years and I saw him at the visitation
on Friday or on Thursday night and I watched I didn’t know who it was at
first I saw this really giant of a man he walks in and he walks up to where the
pictures are he greeted the family he walks up to where the pictures were of
Carol and I see him starting to sob and then he turned around and I thought
that’s Andre and so I went I gave him a big hug and I said hey sit down here man
tell me tell me tell me the impact Carol had in your life and she he starts
telling me the story and I thought you know all that happened with an
interruption it was just a conversation that she had as he was taking her on a
tour of the building and she thought I have something to offer you I can help
and his life was fundamentally changed by one woman who said Here I am Lord use
me don’t ask are you paying attention to
the people that God brings across her path to the moments in the days – to the
little bit that you have to offer she was a schoolteacher she wasn’t somebody
who made $100,000 a year she was a schoolteacher but she took what she had
and the five loaves and two fish and she helped it young man make it through
college I mean it’s an amazing story and her story I think is meant to be our
story by the way one last thing about Carol one day four or five years ago we
were walking out from church and I walked her out to her car and she told
me she said at him I have a liver disease and I you know it’s gonna it’s
gonna claim my life I think she was 68 at the time when she told me this and
she said the doctor said I need a liver transplant but she said I’m not gonna
accept a liver transplant in fact I told the doctor said you know there are
younger people who need that organ and I’ve lived 68 years I’ve lived a good
life already I don’t need to take that I want someone else to have it I’m not
suggesting that should be your answer I would have told her I tried to tell her
you take the organ but for her this was one more chance she had to give them
something to eat for a younger person have a chance at a long life she lived
for years after that and an amazing witness to Christ you give them
something to eat here’s where we end at the end of the
story Luke tells us everyone there was satisfied and there were how many
baskets full of food leftover do you remember twelve baskets full of food one
for each of the Apostles they reluctantly gave up what little bit they
had and they had more than enough at the end and they were all satisfied which is
how it works when we give what we have and then we find the blessings returning
which is why Carol went back and volunteered again and again because she
found she was filled up by serving it’s why the people show up at filmers
kitchen and they give themselves to serving there because they find
themselves filled up when they’re giving someone else something deed we end with
this the early church looked at this story and the reason why they found it
so compelling in part was they saw the feeding of the 5,000 as foreshadow and
what happened in the Eucharist there were thousands of people they were
sinners they were broke they were messed up people but all those
people Jesus fed them all he took them all in and he fed them all and when they
looked at the Eucharist they remembered you remember these things jesus said to
the to the disciples he took the bread he blessed it he broke it he gave it to
them right and then they shared it with all those people What did he say the
Last Supper he took the bread he blessed it he broke it he gave it to the
disciples take it eat this is my body for you in the feeding the 5000 I am The
Living bread and so when they looked at this store and they looked at the
Eucharist every time they received the Eucharist they they felt like they were
part of that crowd of 5,000 on the hillside in Bethsaida once more Jesus is
feeding me and he’s reminding me you give them something to eat
let’s pray Lord of times were weary tired preoccupied even burned out we
don’t want to give anybody anything else we’ve given up all we can we’re just we
just need some quiet time alone with you but in those times especially help us to
pay attention to have compassion to serve to listen for your call help us O
Lord hid to hear your words once more today you give them something to eat
like Thelma and David Carol and so many others direct our hearts to share the
gifts and abilities and resources you’ve given to us so that we might bless
others and in the process find ourselves satisfied Lord as you fed the multitudes
with bread and fish we pray you would feed our hearts with the bread of life I
which will never hunger again Phyllis Lord as we receive you in the bread of
Holy Communion we love you O Lord in your Holy Name Amen thank you for
watching this week’s sermon we’d love for you to join us again online or live
in worship to learn more about Church of the Resurrection please visit Korg have
a great week you

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Comments

  1. Good video. At the Hot Meals last week, I healed a back injury through The Holy Spirit-lady said her back immediately felt better after I prayed for it. My aunt is doing 'Simon Peter' for the Sunday school group before worship. I have sat in on the study's and she does a great job leading it. The Spirit is working through you all. May Jesus bless you.

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