I'm feeling very discouraged this morning. It feels like a particular committee keeps replaying the same meeting month after month and we seldom see any change, movement or improvement in our situation. We are working a process, but the process is taking time and in the mean time things need to happen, decisions need to be made. Sometimes I wish I had a job that didn't require two weeks of prep and two weeks of catch up for every week I spend away.
"I ask for the desire to pray and meditate regularly. I ask for patience, tolerance, gentleness, empathy and compassion. I ask to abstain from anger, anxiety, compulsive behaviour, discouragement, arrogance, and self-importance. I ask to know and follow Jesus more closely, seeking justice, loving kindness, and walking humbly. I need encouragement today."
2 Kings 4:42-44
A man came from Baal-shalishah, bringing food from the first fruits to the man of God: twenty loaves of barley and fresh ears of grain in his sack. Elisha said, ‘Give it to the people and let them eat.’ 43But his servant said, ‘How can I set this before a hundred people?’ So he repeated, ‘Give it to the people and let them eat, for thus says the Lord, “They shall eat and have some left.” ’ 44He set it before them, they ate, and had some left, according to the word of the Lord.
1) "...first fruits;" "...loaves of barley;" "...fresh ears of grain;" "...Give it to the people and let them eat;" "...They shall eat and have some left;" "...they ate, and had some left;"
2) The "man of God" is Elisha. 20 loaves of bread and so much corn, feed 100 people and there is some left over. The "first fruits" ae meant for the temple as part of the thanksgiving offering, set aside for the use of the priests. Elisha gives it to the people gathered. Once again, a "miracle" of Jesus is acted out first by Elisha (or Elijah), but when the story is told of Jesus its bigger. I'm not feeling the abundance this morning. I'm definitely pre-feast. I can't imagine where resources are going to come from. I've been away for a week and I feel as exhausted as when I left despite the fact that returning from my retreat on Sunday I felt renewed. But I come in the door of the office and within minutes I'm overwhelmed with requests, high expectations, and discouraging news. And I still had to drive all the way back to the retreat center to retrieve the keys I'd left behind!
3) What is the invitation in all this? To remember the promise that "they ate, and had some left," is a constant in the story. And that most of the time I experience that abundance. To wait patiently for the one "bringing food from the first fruits."
"Holy One, show me what is left."
Breathprayer: "They shall eat... and have some left."