Growing up, I remember many mom and pop stores having this small little tray in front of the register. The little tray was a tea-dish size and had a sign which read “Take a Penny, Leave a Penny.” The idea behind the tray was for customers to leave behind the extra change to help future customers have exact change in the event they came up short.
This tray showed up in an era when cash was king, and a person could find themselves short by a few cents. Depending on the cashier, they could deny selling you the merchandise if you were short a few cents or even a penny. At that moment, being a penny short was the same as being a dollar short. There were quite a few times I was so grateful that the tray was there.
By the same token, I also left behind some spare change in the trays when given the opportunity. I did this because I remembered what it was like coming up short and how someone else paid it forward for me.
This story reminds me of how, when confronted with the dilemma of feeding the multitude, Jesus’ disciples were also coming up short. They weren’t sure how to feed so many people. What’s more, the text alludes to their being close to 15,000 people in total. Philip tells Jesus that it would take a half year of wages to buy enough bread for each one to have a bite.
Then comes the answer through a little boy. The young lad gives all he had, which was very little, to Jesus. The disciples stay focused on the shortage, but Jesus sees the abundance. At that moment, He takes the little boy’s great faith and blesses it beyond measure, not only for him but for everyone.
This passage is a powerful example of how he can perform the miraculous when we give Him what seems like a little.
Answer and Journal the Following
Read and meditate on John 6: 1-14.
How much and what are you giving to Jesus? Pray and ask God for clarity.
Determine how you will start giving more to Jesus in whatever area he’s calling you to do so. What is your plan of action?
Bonus: Share this with a fellow brother.