Today’s Gospel: Mark 6:34-44
Optional Memorial of Saint Andre Bessette, Religious
I enjoy baking bread. It makes me feel so productive, and it brings a wonderful smell to the kitchen and great smiles to the faces of my family. I went through a spell where the bread looked beautiful until about 5 minutes into the baking and then the tops would go flat. The taste was still great but the loaves looks so goofy it frustrated me. Then one day, for no reason I can understand, I pulled out three of the most beautifully shaped loaves that had come from my oven in a long time. Moments later one of the boys walked in and began to slice himself a piece of warm bread; the problem was, the bread was still too hot to slice, and he flattened and mangled the loaf trying to cut a piece. My shoulders sunk when I saw it . . . all my beautiful hard work . . . mashed into a mess. It was my job to slice and deliver at the right time. Then I realized how happy he was to be enjoying his favorite thing, hot homemade bread and melted butter, and my thoughts changed and the messy loaf of bread didn’t matter anymore. I had forgotten the purpose!
After Jesus had taken, blessed, and broken the bread, something curious happened. He wasn’t the one who gave to the people gathered there that day. He gave the bread to his apostles to share with the people. Jesus had performed an amazing miracle, but when it was time to take credit for the task, he stepped aside and allowed someone else to distribute the blessing. Nobody in the crowd missed out on the eating, but I’m sure many didn’t truly understand the amazing mystery of the multiplication. The greatest part of the story is the love and compassion Jesus felt for the crowd. It was that very love that motivated this great act, but he didn’t need to be recognized; the loving was enough.
I lost sight of the point of this Gospel the day Jason mushed my bread. I was more concerned with having my perfect bread noticed than allowing my efforts to demonstrate my love for my family. I forgot it was about the love and not the credit.
Are there situations in my life where my pride is more obvious than my love?
Loving Father, please remind me that you can work miracles in my life simply because you love me. Please take all my fears, concerns, and trials and love me through them. Help me remember that no task is too big for the One who fed 5,000 with only five loaves and two fish.
We thank our friends at The Word Among Us for providing our gospel reflection team with copies of Abide In My Word 2015: Mass Readings at Your Fingertips. To pray the daily gospels with this wonderful resource, visit The Word Among Us.
Copyright 2015 Sheri Wohlfert