The beauty of this morning’s bible reading (the feeding of the 4000) is that its message of hope is the same whether we believe the healings were by cure or compassionate inclusion and whether we believe the hungry were fed by a miracle of multiplication or mutual sharing. Here is someone to whom we can turn when there seems nowhere and no one else to go to.
After Jesus had left that place, he passed along the Sea of Galilee, and he went up the mountain, where he sat down.Great crowds came to him, bringing with them the lame, the maimed, the blind, the mute, and many others. They put them at his feet, and he cured them, so that the crowd was amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the maimed whole, the lame walking, and the blind seeing. And they praised the God of Israel.
Then Jesus called his disciples to him and said, ‘I have compassion for the crowd, because they have been with me now for three days and have nothing to eat; and I do not want to send them away hungry, for they might faint on the way.’ The disciples said to him, ‘Where are we to get enough bread in the desert to feed so great a crowd?’ Jesus asked them, ‘How many loaves have you?’ They said, ‘Seven, and a few small fish.’ Then ordering the crowd to sit down on the ground, he took the seven loaves and the fish; and after giving thanks he broke them and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. And all of them ate and were filled; and they took up the broken pieces left over, seven baskets full. Those who had eaten were four thousand men, besides women and children.After sending away the crowds, he got into the boat and went to the region of Magadan.