Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat?....
—Jesus (Matthew 6:31a )
BUT, WHAT ABOUT OUR beggar friends? For them, another day of begging has begun.
“Well, ready for another great day?”
“Sure, Lucas. Let's hope we find that prophet again. He can sure draw a crowd.”
They walked and walked, but there was no sign of any crowd. Then, just as they were about to give up, Timotheus spotted it. “Hey, Lucas, look over there. That seems to be the biggest crowd we saw yet.”
“Wow, it does at that. Well, what are we waiting for? Let's go.”
Soon they were working their way through the large crowd as they usually did. Timotheus saw the prophet up at the front, and it seemed that he was healing people again.
Since the crowd was so large, they decided to split up. Lucas took the left side and Timotheus took the right side, which happened to be the side closest to where the prophet was. They were doing fairly well, but now it was beginning to get dark and Timotheus was starting to get hungry, so he thought of looking for Lucas to suggest heading back.
But, just then, something amazing happened. The prophet had said something to some of his disciples, and the disciples were also going through the crowd asking for something. Timotheus couldn't hear what they were asking for, but suddenly one of the disciples took a basket from a young lad and brought it to the prophet. This aroused Timotheus's curiosity. He watched with interest as the prophet took from the basket two fishes and held them up. He then took five small barley loaves and held them up. He seemed to be praying over the loaves and fishes. From the size of the basket, Timotheus realized that it could not possibly have held more.
After the prophet had prayed, he gave the basket back to the disciple who started passing the food out to the crowd. Then is when the amazing thing happened. When the basket became empty, more fish and loaves appeared in it until it overflowed, so that another disciple had to take some loaves and fishes and pass them out to some more of the crowd. As they kept passing out the loaves and fishes, the loaves and fishes kept multiplying. Soon a disciple passed a loaf and fish to Timotheus, who was glad to get it. It tasted great and was just enough to satisfy his hunger. Soon the whole crowd was fed, and the disciples were gathering up the remains.
What kind of man this prophet
Who with meager fish and bread
Can multiply the food until
The whole huge crowd is fed?
Now the crowd was dispersing, and he saw Lucas coming toward him. “Well, we might as well go. I did pretty good for one thing, and for another, we won't have t' worry about supper tonight.”
“Yeah, I did quite well myself. And that fish and bread sure was good and satisfying.”
“Yeah, I wonder why they decided to give it out. It musta cost a fortune.”
“What? Didn't you see th' miracle? It was miraculously multiplied.”
“Whata y' mean? I didn't see anything.”
“You never do.”
“I was goin' through th' crowd as usual, asking alms, when, all of a sudden, this disciple fella comes up t' me and hands me a fish and some barley bread.”
“It was only five loaves and two fishes to start with—from one little boy's lunch. That prophet—now I think he must be the Messiah—prayed over it, and told th’ disciples to hand it out, and, as they did, it was multiplied.”
“What? Are you telling me that that fella fed this whole crowd with just five loaves and two fishes?”
“That's right, Lucas. He has to be th' Messiah.”
“Are you crazy? You must be seeing things. Or it had to be trick of some sort. They probably had the rest of th' food hidden and pulled it out at the right moment. Anyway, I told y' that Messiah stuff's a bunch of nonsense. Come on! I could sure use some sleep.”
Back at the campsite, Timotheus tried again to get his friend to see that it was a miracle, but Lucas insisted: “There has to be a logical explanation. Maybe everybody else had brought fish and barley loaves, and they were just persuaded to share by the prophet's words and the boy's example."
But, somehow, that just didn't set right with Timotheus.
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