“When Jesus then lifted up his eyes, and saw a great company come unto him, he saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat? And this he said to prove him: for he himself knew what he would do. Philip answered him, Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little. One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter's brother, saith unto him, There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many? And Jesus said, Make the men sit down. Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand. And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would. When they were filled, he said unto his disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost. Therefore they gathered them together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten.”
Have you ever noticed that there are many times in the Bible when God starts to do something great through just one person? Here are some of those people and some great things that God did through them:
A preacher who tried to run from God’s will but was used to prevent all of
the occupants of a great city from being destroyed.
A shepherd boy who killed the giant who would have brought the whole
nation of Israel into slavery under the Philistines.
A slave who rose to great power to save nations from starvation.
A peasant girl who was used to save the entire Jewish race from genocide.
An “unsuccessful” preacher who was used by God to save the entire
human race from extinction.
A prisoner on a lonely island to whom God revealed the earthshattering
details of the last stages of earthly history.
A poor girl who gave birth to the Son of God (God in the flesh).
God can use anyone or anything to fulfill his will, but God delights in using those who love him. God wants to bless his own, and one of the greatest blessings is to be used by him.
God called the Apostle Paul “a chosen vessel” in Acts 9:15. Of David, God said, “I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart.” Note that God found David. That means that he looked for him. Also note that God chose Paul. What does God look for when he chooses one of his own to begin to do something great? What God looks for will depend somewhat upon the specific work to be done, but God always looks at the heart. What sort of things does God look for in the heart? We can learn about some of these things by asking ourselves what was in the heart of the lad on that day when Jesus fed the multitude.
It seems that the lad would have had the following kind of heart:
The heart of a child:
He was just a lad. He had a child’s heart (simple and trusting).
A sensitive heart:
He would have sensed the need of the people – they were hungry.
A willing heart:
Not only did he sense the need, but he was willing to help.
A giving heart:
He didn’t have much, but he gave what he had.
A humble heart:
He received no accolades. We don’t even know his name. All of the glory
went to Christ. It was not what the lad gave that was great, it was what
God did with it that was great.
Never underestimate what God can do through just one person who has the kind of heart that God is looking for. Do you want to be used of God to bring glory to him? Ask yourself, “Would God choose me based upon what is in my heart?”. If not, then why not ask God to change your heart?