Daily Light from the Lighthouse
"They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat."
President Truman famously had a small plaque on his desk that said, "The buck stops here." This was a significant statement of recognizing and accepting responsibility for personal situations. We are very quick to "pass the buck" to other people and try to escape responsibilities. This behavior is often found in our spiritual lives as well, especially when it comes to helping others.
Jesus and the disciples had been ministering all day to those who were needy and hurting. You can almost picture Jesus looking on each and every soul with compassion as He touched them, healed them, and encouraged them. As the day turned to evening the disciples became concerned about the time and how this large group of people would return to find food at this late hour. They voiced their concerns to Jesus and received a response that they were not ready for: "They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat."
It seems that the thought had never entered into the minds of the disciples. They were ill prepared to feed such a crowd, and they didn't see it as their responsibility. So often in life we see the needs of individuals and say to ourselves, "Only if someone could help them." I believe that if we listen closely Jesus is speaking to our heart and saying, "Don' send them away. You do something about it." We like the disciples make excuses of why we can't instead of recognizing that through God's power we can. We often think that surely there is a government program that can handle that, but God didn't call the government to minister to people's needs, especially the spiritual. Maybe we say that there is a charitable organization that can help, but the Bible says that we are to have charity personally or we are nothing. Another answer that many have is that taking care of these people is the responsibility of the church, but we must realize that the church is not an organization. The church is God's people, and if you are one of His children then the responsibility is yours.
Let's quit sending people away and passing on our spiritual responsibility. Be like Christ and say that the need stops here.
May you accept your spiritual responsibility today!