A mother reaches into a basket with weary hands and counts out five small loaves of bread and then takes hold of two fish leftover from supper the previous night. She places them into a small bucket, hands the lunch to her son, and smiles as the bucket thumps her back when his small arms encircle her neck with a tight hug.
“Thanks, mom,” he says, before bounding down the path to join his friends. She watches until he is out of sight and then turns back to tackle her list of chores for the day. As she cleans up the kitchen, she wonders how many lunches she has made in her lifetime. Too many to count, but there have been enough that she can complete the task without much thought. In fact, that’s how a lot of her responsibilities seem to be. They are just part of her ordinary, insignificant, daily routine.
Sometimes she wonders if there is even value in what she does. Does she make a difference?
The day slips by like every other day. As the sun slides below the horizon, she glances out the window and sees her son run up the path. He bursts into the house, gasping for breath.
“Mom, you will never believe what happened! Remember that little lunch you made me? The man Jesus was so grateful for it. He even thanked God for it. Then Jesus broke it up into little pieces, and guess what? He gave it to some of his helpers, and they fed a whole crowd! Thousands of people! They all ate until they were full, and twelve baskets were leftover. All from that little lunch that you made!”
The mother lets her son’s words sink in. Jesus was thankful for one little lunch that she made, and he even thanked God for it? Five loaves and two fish became a feast for thousands of people? How is that even possible? She takes the lunch bucket from her son, stares into the empty interior, and smiles.
It must be a miracle.
This miracle recorded in John 6:1 – 13 has encouraged my heart much these last few days. In these words, I have learned that the mundane matters to Jesus. The insignificant tasks that we undertake are significant to him, and he is thankful for them.
In his hands, the ordinary becomes extraordinary.
A task becomes a blessing.
The commonplace is made holy.
“There is a young boy here with five barley loaves and two fish. But what good is that with this huge crowd?” Then Jesus took the loaves, gave thanks to God, and distributed them to the people. Afterward, he did the same with the fish. And they all ate as much as they wanted. John 6:9, 11.