Prayer: We look to you, Jesus, to be reminded of how to spend our time, even when we might have other plans. Amen.
Reading: Matthew 14:13-21 (Click to read text)
Stop and GROW: After reading the text, discuss/ponder the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's Book of Faith questions, which are part of Camp Mount Luther's GROW Time with campers.
QUESTION 1: What scares, confuses, challenges, or doesn’t make sense to me in this text?
QUESTION 2: What delights me in this text or is my favorite part of the story?
QUESTION 3: What stories or memories does this text stir in me?
QUESTION 4: What is God up to in this text?
Reflection: In our story today, Jesus wants to get away and be alone. He probably is planning to spend some time in prayer with his Father. But the crowds follow him. And, being the compassionate person he is, he lets them “invade his space” and spend time with them. The disciples even try to persuade him to tell them to leave. But he says, “No” and tells the disciples to get them some food.
I know there are times in my life when I really don’t want to do something or I want some alone time and I just can’t seem to find it. I have to go to this meeting, or see that person, or someone stops to visit and I can’t get the work done I had planned. But often, in those moments, something magical happens that I didn’t expect. And then I’m glad that I didn’t dismiss the opportunity to spend time with someone or do something that I really didn’t want to do.
Be open for those moments that you have with others that you didn’t expect. Sometimes, you’ll find a God moment in the midst of something you didn’t plan for! --Chad Hershberger
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