While attending the Dallas Mavericks game last year, I heard the seating capacity announced for the game was just under 20,000. I remember thinking that seemed like a lot but looking around the building was almost full that night. As half-time neared, several started to get up and leave for the concessions stands and bathrooms. The lines at both were long but moved quickly and most were able to get back to their seats before the second half began. The arena features two large decks of seats and a box level in-between. The box seats have their own concession stands and offer gourmet meals. The upper and lower decks have multiple bathrooms and concession stands on each end and in each corner. A typical game lasts 2 hours and the commute time is relatively short.

According to Luke 9:7-27, when Jesus fed 5,000 men He did not count the women and children. The size of that crowd would have been close to what I saw a year ago in the modern stadium. This time the crowd came from much farther away. Instead of multiple concession stands spread out evenly across the crowd, there was only one. Luke tells us that Jesus took the five loaves and two fish, and looking up to heaven, He blessed them, and broke them, and kept giving them to the disciples to set before the multitude. Verse 18 states, they were all satisfied.

One concession stand – Jesus, 12 food delivery men, thousands of very hungry followers – all satisfied. I got a small drink and hotdog but I was not satisfied. Immediately before and after this passage, Jesus teaches His disciples who He is and the cost Jesus and His disciples must pay. Jesus used this tangible lesson that everything we need to give to followers of Jesus we get directly from Jesus. Over and over the disciples lived this lesson that day as they made trip after trip to deliver loaves and fish to the masses. The smell of the bread being broken, the feel of the fish oil on their hands, the weariness of hiking from one group to another and back to Jesus to get more and more and more and more.

God let me never forget that what I need to share with people I get from Jesus, and I keep coming back. This is the only way to satisfy them and me.

by Robert Riggs, Elder

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