Twelve Baskets: Picking up the Broken Pieces
How do we have faith in provision among scarcity? Let’s look to God’s Word to see where He has provided abundantly. In Luke 9: 10-17, the apostles and Jesus gathered in a desolate area. 5,000 men in total (and that’s not counting women or children), who get hungry by the end of the day. The apostles thinking ahead warn Jesus that he should take a break… wrap it up so these people can go and get food and shelter. Jesus knows better though, He tells the apostles, “You give them something to eat”.
The crowd gathers into groups of about fifty each. All the food the disciples gathered amounted to 5 loaves and two fish. Jesus took the food, blessed and broke it, giving each disciple a portion to distribute among the groups. Think about it – 12 disciples… each takes half a loaf or a fish and walks to about 20 groups each, breaking off pieces of their bread for each group. Those pieces then are further broken and passed among those groups – multiplied through the blessing of Christ.
After they ate and were satisfied, what was left over was picked up. Twelve baskets of broken pieces, one basket for each apostle, filled with the faith that Jesus will provide. Not only provision for the apostles but for each and every person they seek to serve and save in the name of Christ. For each fish or half loaf distributed, a full basket was returned. In the Bible, twelve is a perfect number, a symbol of God’s power and authority or a number of completion. Having 12 baskets left over tells us this was no error; this is irrefutable proof of the Holy Spirit’s hand in this miracle.
But why was there left-over food? Why didn’t Jesus just feed the 5,000 and say “Hooray! We had enough food!” No – he went above and beyond. His miracle reached beyond the 5,000 men. It proved to the disciples through their faith in giving of the 5 loaves and 2 fish, their generosity and faith was returned with a blessing of food in abundance. When giving in faith, the Lord provides. This is shown here in the book of Luke as well as through our ministries at Trinity and in our community every day.
Now let’s talk about those leftovers that were gathered in broken pieces. Jesus broke the bread, performed the miracle, multiplied the food, fed the people… and the disciples are left picking up the pieces. I can’t help but compare this to how some of the individuals seeking assistance feel… broken, lost or in pieces. Just as no food is left to waste – no person is left to waste – even a broken person is worth being picked up.
Together, with faith in His provision, as a body of Christ, we can come together and provide. We can pick up the broken pieces and put them in our basket – our community – our church – to provide spiritual support. By sharing Christ’s story, we as disciples are able to faithfully support the lost, the last and the least as we are taught through the Gospel.
So why have I started writing about baskets? Because not one, but TWO upcoming Trinity events reaching out to those in need include baskets. Our first set of baskets are filled with food and assembled as Easter Meal Baskets. We gather the pieces of a meal made available for delivery or pickup to our neighbors in need. Non-perishable items along with a ham or turkey become ingredients for a meal we provide. These baskets are the direct response to Luke 9:13 “You give them something to eat.”
The next baskets come in through our Family Feud Fundraiser. Gift Baskets are auctioned off in a Silent Auction during the event and proceeds are split between six charities doing work every day within our community to support with love individuals and families in need. This year, Abigayle Ministries, Families Against Narcotics, Gifts For All God’s Children, Interfaith Volunteer Caregivers, Motor City Mitten Mission and Woman’s Life – Chapter 911, Macomb’s Angels will be competing on May 6 in our Gym to raise funds that will reach those in need.
Our committee has faith that the Lord will provide baskets just as He did when the 5,000 were fed. These events help continue to feed the needs of our community through our food ministry and the support of partner organizations. Are you able to contribute a basket to our table? Or pieces to fill a basket?
For more information on our upcoming “Basket Events” visit trinityutica.com/outreach.