Jesus' disciples said to him, "Send the people away so they can go to the surrounding countryside and villages and buy themselves something to eat." But he answered, "You give them something to eat." - Mark 6:36-37
Have you ever been hungry, really hungry? Maybe you skipped breakfast or lunch so that by the next meal you felt starved, even shaky. Now imagine not being able to relieve that hunger.
Sometimes we take for granted that God will supply us with the "daily bread" we ask for in the Lord's Prayer. We may even think like the disciples in the Bible reading for today - that those who are hungry can go and buy something to eat if they want to. But the evening news tells the real story. Hunger is a part of our time, just as it was in Jesus' time. Even in our own neighborhoods - in my little town, in small cities, and in big cities like Dallas, Chicago, and others - people need food.
I am proud that my church provides a space for a local food pantry. In this multi-denominational ministry, we work together to feed our neighbors. We are doing what Jesus told the disciples, "You give them something to eat."
I want us always to remember Jesus' words in Matthew 25: "Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me" (verse 40).
William O. Palmer (Pennsylvania, USA)
Lord, open our eyes to see those around us who are hungry. Then touch our hearts and soften them so that we become willing to feed them. Help us to care for our neighbors in need. Amen.