Sunday, July 24, 2016

The round-about

Once again glory to God for being here today.  Today is a new day and tomorrow is coming and we have no idea what it will bring for us.  Are you ready to receive tomorrow?  If yes, praise God.  If not, think twice.


Mark 6:37

They came to Jesus saying, we need something to eat and He said, “Give them something to eat”.  This is what I will call that the roundabout.  At the roundabout you find three or five or six different roads coming from different corners of the city and you have to decide what road you will take and if you choose the wrong one you may end up in the wrong destination but choose the right one and you end up in your destiny.


Jesus was preaching and suddenly He said, “We have to go because the crowd was increasing” and He went into the boat with the disciples.  Those on the land will run by the boat and wherever the boat landed, the people would be there.  Humans were rushing to catch up with Jesus.  Maybe the disciples said, “We can breathe now that we have left them behind, we are now free” but then suddenly the crowd shows up again.  Jesus looked at the crowd of people with compassion and said, “I can see they are like sheep without a shepherd and they need someone to look after them”.


How often do you have compassion on others, to yourself, to your work and what you do with that compassion?  Jesus has compassion on us and He knows we need someone to feed us and look after us.  The disciples knew the Word of God but they weren’t supplying enough to these people.


Jesus started to preach to them, to feed to them and after taking it all in, time was not waiting for them and now it was late in the evening.  The disciples stood up, “Lord, these people are tired and it is getting late”.  Look how the disciples are teaching God the time and reminding him that time is ticking, you are taking too long.  Sometimes we shake God, look time is passing, why are you taking long before you let us go, feed us, give us the answer to my prayers.


These people are hungry, they need food.  Maybe the disciples themselves were hungry.  Jesus looked at them and said, “Give it to them”.  You ask God for something and He puts it on you to find the solution while you have nothing.  Jesus didn’t have any food in His hands but they were asking Jesus for food to eat.  Give them food to eat was his answer.


When you reach a roundabout and you haven’t decided which lane to take, you panic and maybe stop in the middle of the roundabout and then a person will beep at you and you will miss the road and try again.  Sometimes God takes us around and around and you have to give yourself the answer.  You are capable, don’t stop at the roundabout because you will create a problem and someone might be killed.  You can’t say, I will leave my car here and walk.  You need to move at the roundabout and have to get prepared for vehicles that come and we have to be alert on right and left, how will I escape.


Jesus said it is your role to play, find something for these people.  How?  Ourselves, we have nothing.  We are too far from the shops.  How will we do this?  They were moving and thinking what they could say, they didn’t have money or shops or enough bread to feed everybody.  “How many loaves do you have?” Jesus asked His disciples.  He knew they had nothing.  The disciples were not prepared to stay there forever and were sure they will go back home and won’t need to bring food with them.


This is the challenge God sometimes puts us in.  You have to give offering and people will tell you, I have nothing.  Maybe give your heart, voice to sing.  He needs what you give from the deep of your heart.  Jesus said, “Put those people together in groups of 50s and 100s.  The disciples counted.  How long can it take to count those groups and when they were counting, they were hungry and tired while people are moving and disturbing the order so the disciples had to count again.  After counting and putting them in the groups, “Who has food among you?”


The little boy whose mother gave him 5 bread and 2 fish spoke up.  Jesus came by water (on the sea) and the people ran on the land.  The fish comes from water and the bread comes from the land.  The fish and the bread met together in the bag of the little boy.  No one knew what was inside of the bag while people were hungry.  The boy spoke up, I have some bread.  Five loaves.  A crowd of thousands and you only have five bread.  Jesus said, bring it here.


Once they brought it to Jesus.  Before they saw the bread and fish, they have to unpack the bag.  You can have all the blessings with you while others are crying with hunger but you have to unpack what is inside.  When you think about the desert (where they were) you think about dry land with sand and no grass but miraculously there was grass here because Jesus said to sit on the grass.


You might be in a situation where everything in your life is dry (love, relationships, money is dry) but God can make grass for you with a group of 50 people to make happiness in your life.  In that big crowd of people with a little child with his little bag of fish and bread and no one noticed him because he was just a child.  Maybe the disciples were only asking adults and putting the children aside.  That is what the church is doing today.  I’m a pastor, I only want to talk to pastors.  You people down there, I have nothing to do with you.


Lord our God blesses you through small things.  The first Adam was created as a man but the second Adam was born as a baby.  Jesus was born as a child.  Why not come down as a fully grown man?  The Kingdom of God is like children.  The secret behind children?  Jesus calls us children of God even though we are adults.  I’m an adult but God will say, you are my child.


This young boy didn’t cook the fish or bake the bread, the mother did the job and gave it to him to eat.  The mother did not come with the boy, he went by himself.  The boy is among the crowd of adults with fish and bread hidden, bring him out.


When you are at the roundabout in your life, look at the children (those who are humble and will tell you the truth).  Jesus took the five bread and counted them.  How long would it have taken to count?  Two seconds to count the fish and bread while the disciples had to count groups of 50s which took time.  Five plus two equals seven which we all know the meaning of that number.


The people were sitting down waiting and hungry.  Be patient.  Jesus picked up the bread and broke it piece by piece.  Hurry up Jesus, we are hungry.  Jesus broke it into small pieces and maybe some pieces were dropping on the ground.  Finally the blessings started to show up.  The power of breaking the bread started to show up.


If you want blessing in your life, accept to be broken first.  Accept to be broken in pieces and accept that you are nothing and that is when God will bring you a huge blessing that can feed 4000 men.  If you don’t want to be broken because it hurts, God will tell you, “If you don’t accept to be broken, forget about my blessings”.


All those in the Bible who were blessed, even healings, He will tell you, you are a sinner, sin no more.  I will break you by informing everyone here, you are a sinner, don’t sin anymore.  Imagine you are exposed in front of the crowd.  How will you feel?


This rich person, “I’ve done everything God, now tell me how to inherit the Kingdom of God”.  Give away your wealth.  “No way, I’m against that”.


This young boy made a big sacrifice to give away his food and he stayed there empty handed because he gave everything away.  He didn’t hide it or keep for himself but gave for the entire crowd, “Jesus take it all, do what you want”.  How often do you give to God all that you have?  We very often hold onto half of it and only give God a portion because we believe we will lose something. 


God is asking you to give it all and the boy did.  Suddenly they forget about the boy and only focus on their own loaves and fish.  They started to eat.  After eating the bread, the Bible says that 12 baskets were collected.  Why do you cry or complain about your situation everytime and tell God you don’t have enough?  God is saying you have your bag with you, five loaves and two fish, it’s enough for you and others but why don’t you bring it out and share with others.


I only have $10, what can I do with this? I have two kids, maybe we can have fish and chips and then while I’m thinking, Ange turns up with four girls and then Annette with Chris.  If I buy $10 chips with this crowd of people, my children will not have enough.  We become selfish, I will wait for them to leave so we can have enough.


God says, “I have given something small in your pocket but you don’t want to share with others”.  Some will prefer to use the money for a movie ticket while someone is hungry.  Where is love, where is Christianity?  Aren’t we like the disciples, God has given them a crowd and He feels compassion because they had no leader.  The disciples had knowledge for themselves but not to share with others.  Judas had money but didn’t suggest to buy food, “No, I’m a good accountant, we don’t have to spend money”.


When it is a matter of money, people become serious.  Because of love of money, people will fight the government, their bosses, the shopkeepers, “you gave me the wrong change”.  Here Jesus is teaching us to give it all.  The boy didn’t say, “mummy said its mine, I can’t share it”.  He opened his heart, “here it is”.  Now this small boy is written in the Bible as sharing his food.  Where were the adults?  Maybe some adults had something small but didn’t want to give it, they kept it for themselves and when the miracle was performed, they thought, oh I should have given.


We sometimes run behind God and ask God for something and He says, “You have it,” and you go around and around the roundabout and God says, “Give what you have”.  What you have to do is open your mouth and ask God what road should I take?  That is the first mistake Adam did.  When the serpent arrived and gave Eve the fruit.  Why didn’t they wait for God and ask Him if they were allowed to eat it.  Because of lack of patience they didn’t want to wait.  We always need patience in life.


If you don’t have patience, you don’t have love.  Those who sat down waiting, they could not see this if they couldn’t wait for the disciples.  Once the miracle happened, the job of the disciples was to distribute the food and people were eating with joy.  How do you feel when people eat with joy with you?  Some might feel like telling the visitors, “You have eaten enough now, stop now,” because they are thinking of tomorrow. 


When God gave the manna, that bread could only be eaten today and not tomorrow because God gives more tomorrow.  The blessing that you get, even the talking that you do, seeing people are all blessings so use it and share in a nice way with others.  Be kind with others.  Treat others like human beings.  God is asking us to use our blessings so others benefit from it.  If you have extra shoes, give them to others and that is how you get more blessings.  After giving away, you will be surprised to see you still have 12 baskets of blessings (After eating, Jesus said to collect it all the leftovers). 


We send our children and we want them to be children of God.  When satan comes in our family and wants to snatch our child, what do we do?  Stop, give him/her back and you fight.  The secret to finding the solution is to pray, seek God first.


God says, I’m here for you.  Show off pastors will pray and command Jesus and Jesus says, “I will not do it, who are you to command me?”  Give your problem to Jesus directly, He will break you but give you the solution and you will get all the blessing.  Don’t minimise yourself, you have enough because five loaves fed 4,000 people.  Two words in front of God is enough.  A pastor can never sort out your issues, talk to God, He is your friend and God and provider.  God can do it.  There is no other solution except for God. 


Instead of going around the roundabout, ask God which way to take and He will tell you which exit to take and you will continue your journey.