Then the apostles gathered to Jesus and told Him all things, both what they had done and what they had taught. And He said to them, 'Come aside by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.' For there were many coming and going, and they did not even have time to eat. So they departed to a deserted place in the boat by themselves.
But the multitudes saw them departing, and many knew Him and ran there on foot from all the cities. They arrived before them and came together to Him. And Jesus, when He came out, saw a great multitude and was moved with compassion for them, because they were like sheep not having a shepherd. So He began to teach them many things. When the day was now far spent, His disciples came to Him and said, 'This is a deserted place, and already the hour is late. Send them away, that they may go into the surrounding country and villages and buy themselves bread; for they have nothing to eat.'
The Book of Mark adds new light to the feeding of 5000. We learn it followed the return of the Master's disciples, who came back tired and hungry from their first missionary trips. By His Orders, they were en route to a much-needed retreat. At the same time, great multitudes chased them from many cities.*
But His understudies had a lesson to learn from the Star: tending to others means more than tending to personal needs. After Jesus ministered to these followers all day long, His disciples most likely were thinking, enough is enough. So they said to their Teacher, 'Send them away that they may eat.'
His answer was a great surprise: 'You give them something to eat' (Mark 6:37). It was a test they would pass, but only after objections.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: The Lord will say when you've done enough, so don't stop before the finish line. Missing a little sleep won't hurt you. Missing a few meals? Probably not. Satan loves to hit you when it hurts, like tempting you on an empty stomach. Or pushing you when you're sleep deprived.
So if you're running close to empty and feel like dropping out of the race, pray for God's heavenly energy. If you ask Him to fill you, He will.
To Be Continued...
* Jesus sends out disciples; the feeding of 5000: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=mark+6%3A7-12%2C30-44&version=NKJV
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Bad Ideas series.