The Lord is the quintessential example of making do with what you have. He is able to provide abundance from an experience of poverty.
When it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, ‘This is a deserted place, and the hour is now late; send the crowds away so that they may go into the villages and buy food for themselves.’ Jesus said to them, ‘They need not go away; you give them something to eat.’ They replied, ‘We have nothing here but five loaves and two fish.’ And he said, ‘Bring them here to me.’
In a situation where the disciples were prepared to send the crowds away, Jesus challenged them to feed them with their meager rations. To the disciples, it was an impossible feat. There was not enough food to provide for them all. How could they feed thousands with food meant to satisfy a few?
The answer is found in surrendering the little to Jesus. For Him, it is manageable to multiply the fish and the bread to be superabundant. The same is true with each one of us. When we surrender ourselves to the Lord, little though we may be, He is able to do far more with it then we could imagine.
You give them something to eat. In our littleness, Christ is asking us to be streams of living water and bountiful banquets for the weary wanderers we encounter. Yes, we are to direct them to Jesus, but Jesus living in us. When we present ourselves to the Lord, He provides. It is never just enough, it always more than we could have hoped.
Why couldn’t He? If He is capable of feeding thousands with a few loaves and fish, can He not use our littleness to reach multitudes? Can He not multiply our efforts and produce a miracle in the midst of our poverty? Of course, He can. It simply requires we present Him with all that we have and all that we are, despite the littleness.
We need to trust Him with everything. This week has hammered home the reality that I cannot fully and completely trust anyone except the Lord. While it can appear discouraging, it is also a relief. Everyone will in some way not measure up to the perfection I want them to maintain. But the Lord, He will never fail. In fact, He embraces me as I am, with all my strengths and weaknesses, in all my wealth and poverty. And with this entire gift of self, He transforms it into something beautiful and worthy of Him.
He doesn’t just make do, He performs a miracle.