Lesley (pictured here) is our E:KIDZ Director on staff at Element Church. Recently, she shared this devo with our staff at our weekly all-staff prayer time.
Over this past year, I have been working through many of the lies that I have believed about myself. The one lie that seems to be repeated over and over in different ways is that I can only count on myself. This crazy lie has impacted so many of my friendships and relationships, my habit patterns, and my especially my relationship with God.
A few months ago, while I was doing listening prayer, this lie reared its ugly head once more. I realized that I go into every situation expecting to be disappointed and let down. Just hanging on and waiting for the bottom to fall out.
This lie that I have been believing cripples me from asking others for help because I expect them to bail and leave me to do it all on my own anyway, so why even bother asking for help?
The enemy is great at convincing us that these lies are true. And he will remind us of all the ways we have been let down and left handling things on our own. He whispers all the ways that we are a burden or reminds us of the past disappointments and convinces us that we have to do it alone.
As I worked through this lie that I have believed for most of my life, I was reminded of a few stories from the life of Christ.
The account of Jesus feeding the 5,000 is in every gospel in the Bible. Why was this one miracle recorded by all 4 writers? Yes, it is an incredible miracle, and no one had ever seen anything like it before. But there was one part that really stuck out to me.
In Mark’s account, it says this: Late in the afternoon his disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away so they can go to the nearby farms and villages and buy something to eat.” But Jesus said, “You feed them.” “With what?” they asked. “We’d have to work for months to earn enough money to buy food for all these people!” “How much bread do you have?” he asked. “Go and find out.” They came back and reported, “We have five loaves of bread and two fish.” Then Jesus told the disciples to have the people sit down in groups on the green grass. So they sat down in groups of fifty or a hundred Jesus took the five loaves and two fish, looked up toward heaven, and blessed them. Then, breaking the loaves into pieces, he kept giving the bread to the disciples so they could distribute it to the people. He also divided the fish for everyone to share. They all ate as much as they wanted, and afterward, the disciples picked up twelve baskets of leftover bread and fish. A total of 5,000 men and their families were fed.’
In verse 38 Jesus instructs the disciples to “go and find out”. He knew exactly how much was available, but he asked for help.
Then in verse 39, he tells the disciples “to have the people sit in groups on the green grass”. Again, Jesus could have spoken to the crowd and everyone would have done what he asked, but he asked for help from his disciples.
In John 6:12-13 it says, “After everyone was full, Jesus told his disciples, “Now gather the leftovers, so nothing is wasted. So they picked up the pieces and filled twelve baskets with scraps left by the people…”
Again, Jesus asked for help.
Perhaps one of the reasons every Gospel includes this story was because everyone got to be a part of the miracle. And because everyone did their part, there was also an abundance in the end.
Jesus didn’t need to ask for help. He could have done it all on his own. But he chose to include others in the miracle that he was about to perform.
On the days when I am struggling to ask others for help, wanting to carry the load on my own, I am reminded of a few things in this example from the life of Christ.
1. If Jesus isn’t too good to ask for help, then neither am I.
2. When I ask for help from others, they get to be part of the blessing.
3. When I ask for help, there is always an abundance.