Sharing What We Have
Sharing what we have will always be used by Jesus
A box of marshmellow fish and a box of biscuits (plain to look something like bread). Small plastic or paper plates equal to the number of volunteers.
When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward him, he said to Philip, "Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?" He asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do. Philip answered him, "Eight months' wages would not buy enough bread for each one to have a bite!" Another of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter's brother, spoke up, "Here is a boy with five small barley loaves and two small fish, but how far will they go among so any?" Jesus said, "Have the people sit down." There was plenty of grass in that place, and the men sat down, about five thousand of them. Jesus then took the loaves, gave thanks, and distributed to those who were seated as much as they wanted. He did the same with the fish. When they had all had enough to eat, he said to his disciples, "Gather the pieces that are left over. Let nothing be wasted." So they gathered them and filled twelve baskets with the pieces of the five barley loaves left over by those who had eaten. After the people saw the miraculous sign that Jesus did, they began to say, "Surely this is the Prophet who is to come into the world." John 6: 5 - 14 (NIV)
PREPARATION: Prepare a plates or plates (max. of 4) with 2 fish and 5 biscuits on each. Hide the full boxes away so that they are not seen when the children come in.
Do you sometimes feel that you have nothing to offer Jesus? You say I can't do anything special. I can't play a sport like so and so, or I can't sing like that person, or I am too shy to do anything!
There was once a boy whose mother gave him 5 loaves and two fish for his lunch. It was a little like this plate of food that I have here. (show one of the plates). The Bible does not give us his name, but lets call him Joshua. He wanted to go an hear Jesus and was very excited. He was very surprised to find SO many people there - yes, over 5000 men, and that did not include the women and the children, and there were many there just like him. He pushed forward to be near Jesus so that he could see him clearly and hear what he had to say.
A little later he heard Jesus and his disciples having a conversation about food. What was that? They were saying that people were hungry and there was not enough food. One of the disciples was saying that it would take a huge amount of money to buy food that would even give everyone just one bite. Joshua looked around him. It seemed that his mom was the only one who had given him any food. He began to feel hungry, but he felt shy to eat his food in front of the others. He wanted to share, but who would he share it with? Then he got an idea! He would ask one of the disciples.
So Joshua made his way to a friendly looking disciple called Andrew, and offerred his food. Andrew was so kind. He looked at Joshua and gave him a broad smile. He put his arm over his shoulder and led him over to Jesus. Joshua felt quite nervous, but also very special! All the crowd could see him. Jesus made him feel so welcome. He thanked Joshua for the 5 loaves and 2 fishes. Then, instead of eating it or sharing it with a few people, he asked the disciples to get everyone to sit down. That took some doing! It was quite some time before everyone was seated. Jesus took the loaves and fishes and lifting his arms in the air, he blessed them. Then the most amazing thing happenned. Jesus began to break off pieces of bread and fish, and the more he broke the more there seemed to be. People looked with huge eyes! They blinked. Was this really what they were seeing? Maybe they were dreaming.
But they were not dreaming! From the 2 fish and 5 loaves, there was enough food to feed all 5000 men plus women and children. What excitement! And when everyone had had enough there were still 12 basketfulls left over!
Jesus took the small gift that the boy gave and used it in a special way.
Jesus can use the gift that we have and use it as well. Maybe we find it easy to talk to others, and we can make them feel better when they are feeling sad. Maybe you are able to share your time, or your computer, or your games, with someone that does not have. They will see what you have done and begin to help others as well. Maybe we do well in sport and we can show others that we follow Jesus by being fair and not getting upset while playing sport. Through that others in the team may see that and change their attitudes. A whole team could change from you using what you have. Slowly the whole team may become better. It may be in sharing your pocket money. There are many ways we can share the gifts and talents that we have.
Now I have here not just one plate, but 4 plates with loaves and fish. Who would like one?
(As soon as they have been "claimed" say) Hold on! You have just been given 5 loaves and 2 fish. What did the boy who got them in our story do with them? That's right, he shared them. Now how about you sharing them with others?
How did that feel? It is not always easy to share what we have got. Sometimes we think our posessions are too valuable to share. Maybe they will get broken. But Jesus wants us to share no matter how hard it may be! And he promises that he will take the little that we have and use it.
Now look what I have here! When the boy shared what he had, everyone got! I have enough here for everyone - so come and get it!
Dear Jesus. Please help me to share what I have and would you then use it in a special way. Thank you that nothing we bring is ever too small for you to use.