I know Jesus has felt every pain, every anxiety we’ve felt. I know He took it all to the cross so we wouldn’t have to carry that burden alone and we could be forgiven. But sometimes it’s hard to picture how He experienced 2014 anxiety back in the days before iPhones or cars, or heck even way before indoor plumbing.
So the other day I spent some time praying about our finances – I do that a lot because that seems to be the flaming arrow of anxiety the enemy shoots at me daily, and because I’ve got one in college and one on the way in a couple of years and college is expensive, people. REAL expensive. And our goal is to get 2 children in and out of college without student loan debt, without me and my husband having to live under a bridge eating Alpo when we’re old.
So the other day as I was praying about this I wondered how did Jesus ever feel the pressure of having enough to provide for His family?
So I asked Him. It came out a little Godfather-ish, Jersey-style – “I mean no disrespect, but ay – when did you struggle with money, with your finances, with providing for your family?”
Gosh Jesus just never disappoints. Whenever I earnestly ask Him something He always delivers an answer. This time he brought the story found in Luke chapter 9, verses 10-17 to my mind. And since my mind is really, really crowded these days with recipes I want to try but won’t get around to, the list of to-do’s to get my daughter ready to go back to college and the best way to get a black golf ball marker stain out of white shorts, I thought it best to get my Bible out and read it.
Cliff Notes version (Do they still use Cliff Notes or is that passé now?): Jesus was preaching and a crowd gathered. A crowd of 5,000 gathered – that’s a lot of mouths to feed. And all the disciples had to feed them was 2 fish and 5 loaves of bread.
I’m no math genius, but that wasn’t going to get it. Did Jesus panic? Nope. Did Jesus put on His whiney-pants and complain to God? (“Now you put me out here to preach and I don’t have any food to feed all these people, wah, wah, wah…) Not even close. Did he doubt God? Nu-uh.
“Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke them. Then he gave them to the disciples to distribute to the people. They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over.” (Luke 9:16, 17)
THAT’S how Jesus felt the pressure of providing. No, it wasn’t money specifically but money is the source of provision. Jesus needed to feed 5,000 people, and I need to pay for college. But I learned a little secret when I dove into that Scripture – He didn’t worry, He didn’t panic. Jesus took what He had, lifted it to heaven, gave thanks, and let God provide. And not only did God provide, but He gave Jesus more than He asked for.
So yes, Jesus has felt everything we’ve ever felt. It may not be clear how He felt it, but He has. That’s a huge comfort when we’re struggling with something, no matter what it is.
So now when the enemy tries to freak me out about our finances, I’ve got ammunition of my own. Two fish and some bread, buddy – take that!
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