Andy Stoddard ~ Simple Gifts
What simple gifts do you have this holiday season? Reflect on this piece from our archives by Rev. Andy Stoddard.
One of the things that I love most about God is how God can take our small efforts, the things in our life that we don’t believe are good enough, and make them truly amazing. He can take our small, human efforts, and perform divine miracles with them.
He can make the impossible, possible. Listen to what happens in John 6: 8-11:
One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, said to him, “There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish. But what are they among so many people?” Jesus said, “Make the people sit down.” Now there was a great deal of grass in the place; so they sat down, about five thousand in all. Then Jesus took the loaves, and when he had given thanks, he distributed them to those who were seated; so also the fish, as much as they wanted.
Jesus is here with a crowd of 5,000 (men, there were, most assuredly many woman and children there also) and it’s time to eat. But there is nothing there to eat, at least nothing that could feed a crowd this big.
But in this text, we see two people who I’m sure must have felt foolish offer up a small little gift when they saw a huge need.
First, the boy offers to Andrew these five loaves and two fish. And then Andrew offers them to Jesus.
You can almost see the child sweetly offering up the food, as a child would go to their piggy bank when their family has a need. The parents smile knowing that it won’t be enough. You can almost see Andrew do that.
But then he takes that sweet gift to Jesus, knowing that there is no way it can help, but at least it’s something. And Jesus performs a miracle.
From one small gift, Jesus feeds thousands.
Today, we all have gifts that seem so small with all the needs around. Offer them anyway. Give them to Jesus. Give to them to his mercy and grace. And see what he can do.
He can take our simple, small gifts, and do amazing things with them. All for our good (and the good of others) and his glory!
Today, give your simple gifts to Jesus.