Jesus went to the shore of Lake Galilee, and then went up into the hills where he sat down. Great crowds came to him, bringing the dumb, the blind, the lame, the crippled, and many with other infirmities. The people carried them to the feet of Jesus, and he healed them. All were astonished when they saw the dumb speaking, the lame walking, the crippled healed and the blind able to see; so they glorified the God of Israel.
Jesus called his disciples and said to them, «I am filled with compassion for these people; they have already followed me for three days and now have nothing to eat. I do not want to send them away fasting, or they may faint on the way». His disciples said to him, «And where shall we find enough bread in this wilderness to feed such a crowd?». Jesus said to them, «How many loaves do you have?». They answered, «Seven, and a few small fish». So Jesus ordered the people to sit on the ground. Then he took the seven loaves and the small fish and gave thanks to God. He broke them and gave them to his disciples, who distributed them to the people.
They all ate and were satisfied, and the leftover broken pieces filled seven wicker baskets.
We are not Jesus to do miracles like this and how to apply today’s gospel in our daily life? I would like to propose to you three approaches which may help you to live it fully.
Look at Jesus’ acts and try to understand how God acts, particularly the way He expresses His love for us. Jesus Himself is the perfect image of God. His compassion and mercy are the same of the Father. Looking at Jesus we can understand what God expects from us, today, here and now. All that we need to do is to imitate Jesus and inherit divine qualities in us.
Look at the way the disciples cooperate with Jesus. They were ready to share the very little that they had and Jesus multiplies them. In fact, God doesn’t need us to accomplish His will. However, our cooperation with God will help us to grow humanly. A perfect human is very close to divine. To perfect our humanity, we should identify the qualities that God has entrusted to us and have to work hard to perfection it. In its perfection, we should share them with others, because all that God has given to us, has a finality, particularly in the human salvation.
The Lord is our shepherd and we are his sheep. This God is not outside of us, He is very deep into our being. We should believe that in silence He continues to guide us and accompany us. Once we realize that this God is in every being, our approach to the world will radically change and our service to the humanity will be the best way to serve this loving and compassionate God. It’s here that sharing of ourselves will be a pleasure than a burden.
Action of the day: share what you have with others.
«‘How many loaves do you have?’. They answered, ‘Seven, and a few small fish’»
Fr. Joan COSTA i Bou
Today we reflect on the multiplication of the bread and fish in the Gospel. Many people —Matthew states— «came to him» (Mt 15:30). Men and women who were in need of Christ: blind people, cripples and sick people of every kind, together with those who accompanied them. We are all in need of Christ. Of his tenderness, his forgiveness, his light, his mercy... In him, the fullness of all that is human can be found.
Today's Gospel makes us aware of the need for men who will lead others to Christ. Those who bring Jesus the sick so that he can cure them are the image of all those who know that the greatest act of charity towards their fellow man is to get them close to Christ, the source of our life. A life of faith demands holiness and apostolate.
Saint Paul urges us (Phil 2:5) to have the same feelings as Christ. This story shows what Jesus' heart is like: «I am filled with compassion for these people». He cannot leave them, because they are hungry and tired. Christ searches man out in his necessity and manages to be there for us to find. How good he is to us!; and how important we people are for him! Our hearts swell with gratitude, admiration and a sincere wish for conversion.
This God made man, all-powerful, who loves us passionately, and whom we need in everything and for everything —«apart from me you can do nothing» (Jn 15:5)— paradoxically requires something from us as well: this is the meaning of the seven loaves of bread and the few fish that he will use to feed a crowd. If we really realized how much Jesus counts on us, and of the value of all we do for him, as small as it is, we would try all the harder to correspond to him with all our being.