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The Missing Bread

  • RHM Devotional: The Missing Bread from Refreshing Hope Ministries on Vimeo.

    Today I want to talk about the lack of provision, and all the things that seem to come with it. When we are faced with the lack of something, we tend to look at ourselves, what can “we” do, in our strength, and with the provisions that we have. We tend to take our eyes off Jesus, and soon plummet into a life of chaos filled with emergencies. Soon there is never enough of anything, and it is mostly because we lost our focus. Let’s take a look at the disciples of Jesus:

    And he left them, got into the boat again, and went to the other side. Now they had forgotten to bring bread, and they had only one loaf with them in the boat. And he cautioned them, saying, “Watch out; beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod.” And they began discussing with one another the fact that they had no bread. And Jesus, aware of this, said to them, “Why are you discussing the fact that you have no bread? Do you not yet perceive or understand? Are your hearts hardened? Having eyes do you not see, and having ears do you not hear? And do you not remember? Mark 8:13-18 ESV

    The disciples had forgotten to bring enough bread for their trip, and they only had one loaf on the boat with them. When Jesus told them to beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Herod, they began to immediately look at their physical needs, and the lack of supplies which was their fault. Because of their oversight of not bringing bread for the trip, they probably looked down at their feet and assumed that Jesus was scolding them.

    Jesus was not talking about physical bread. The leaven mentioned here wasn’t merely yeast, but a pinch of dough left over from the previous batch, as in the making of sourdough bread. This was how bread was commonly leavened in the ancient world, and a little pinch of dough from the old lump could make a whole new lump of dough rise and “puff up.” The work of leaven was considered an illustration of the work of sin and pride. The point was that the presence of a little can corrupt a large amount, and to be wary of mixing “the old ways” with the new.

    Jesus essentially said, “Beware of the evil way the Pharisees and Herod think of the Kingdom of God, for soon I will reveal it to you.” Both Herod and the Pharisees idealized the Kingdom as domineering power and authority. Herod saw it more as political power and authority, and the Pharisees saw it as more spiritual power and authority, but they still saw the kingdom in this high-minded way, with themselves at the top of it. Jesus revealed that the greatest in the Kingdom of God would be as humble as a little child (Matthew 18:4) and not the domineering political power that most expected to come.

    In the boat, the disciples were not blamed by Jesus for their lack of provisions, but for their lack of faith in His provision for them. It it always that way. God speaks to us and we immediately begin to look at ourselves as a failure: “We have let Him down” or “We don’t have enough for that.” Then He says “Why don’t you understand that it is not about what you have? Don’t you remember what I have already done for you in the past?”

    When God calls us to do something, we often look at what we have available on hand and then say “We don’t have enough” but that is completely irrelevant to His plan succeeding. Jesus had already taken five loaves of bread and fed five-thousand and there were twelve baskets of broken pieces left over. Another time He had taken seven loaves of bread and fed four-thousand and there were seven baskets of broken pieces left over. One loaf was enough. There was no shortage of bread in that boat.

    The disciples were blinded by an immediate need and had forgotten that as they put God’s kingdom first, their needs would be met, just as the thousands were fed. Jesus said this in Luke:

    “Don’t seek what you will eat or what you will drink; neither be anxious. For the nations of the world seek after all of these things, but your Father knows that you need these things. But seek God’s Kingdom, and all these things will be added to you” (Luke 12:29–31 WEB).

    When they began to look at themselves and their failures, Jesus was grieved. He told them “Why do you reason that it’s because you have no bread? Don’t you perceive yet, neither understand? Is your heart still hardened? Having eyes, don’t you see? Having ears, don’t you hear? Don’t you remember?”

    After all this time with Jesus, the disciples still could not see past their immediate physical needs. Their lack blinded them to the truth, they were spiritually deaf, hardened, and insensitive to the Spirit of God, like us. When they got to land, the next miracle that Jesus did was opening the eyes of a blind man (Mark 8:22).

    Do not look at your immediate needs in fear, and do not dwell on your past failures. Focus on the Kingdom of God, on knowing God, and then the things that you need will be added unto you. As you trust God and seek Him, He will take care of you. God’s provision comes along with His vision.

    David wrote: “Delight yourself also in the LORD, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.” (Psalm 37:4 ESV). When you chase Him, His blessings will chase you. He will make a way, where there is no way and He will make the impossible, become a part of your testimony.

    You can pray this with me if you like:

    Prayer: Heavenly Father please open my eyes and ears. Help me to see and hear what the Spirit says to the church. I want to be a part of what you are doing today. Please speak to me and through me, in the name of Jesus Christ I pray, amen.


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14 comments
  • 0
Debi Burton
Debi Burton Amen...... Thank you RHM
Feb 19
  • 1
Marisa Jackson
Marisa Jackson

What a way to start the week!  Thank you Father for ALL that you provide for me everyday.  I am truly BLESSED and thankful for the love and compassion you show ALWAYS.  In Jesus name I pray, Amen. 

Feb 17
  • 1
Mary Pat Taylor
Mary Pat Taylor

Thank you Pastor. I really needed this, especially since I am needing to find a new job.  Been hoping and paying the Lord will lead me to a job that pays enough and also is better for me stress-wise than the call centers I've been working in. 

Feb 18
  • 1
Schalk  de Beer
Schalk de Beer

Yes, amen Lord

Feb 18
  • 1
Mari Kaufmann
Mari Kaufmann

Dear God thank you. Amen. 

Feb 18
  • 1
Kay Collinsworth
Kay Collinsworth

Amen Father and Thank You

Feb 18
  • 1
Linda Clark
Linda Clark

Amen

Feb 18
  • 1
Larry Fowler
Larry Fowler

AMEN!

Feb 18
  • 1
Rhonda Jones
Rhonda Jones

Amen.  Thank you this message.  I needed this reminder     ,   

Feb 18
  • 1
Jose Simo
Jose Simo

Heavenly Father open my ears to listen and my eyes to see what Your message is. Lead me and I'll follow Your designs, thank You Father for Your love and provision. In Jesus name I pray, Amen. 

Thank you Pastor for this reminder, God bless you. 

Feb 18
  • 1
Wesley Paulus
Wesley Paulus

Amen!

Feb 18
  • 2
Liesel  aka  Lisa Wardle
Liesel aka Lisa Wardle

Amen! Thank you for this timely message! Oh Lord, my God, i want to put you first in everything, please open my eyes - make me see what You would have me see. Please open my ears to hear Your voice and instruction, please show me Your way and give me Your vision, and please direct me by Your Spirit to do and say everything following Your will and purpose for my life, in the name of Jesus Christ , Amen!

Feb 18
  • 1
Cheryl Hepler
Cheryl Hepler

 Deeply needed this...to work on continuly refocusing on Jesus and all He taught me.  Amen

Feb 19
  • 1
Deborah Alexander
Deborah Alexander

Thank you for the Awesome. God given message h

Feb 20