Daily Devotionals

Trouble Maker Week 7: Wednesday

Jesus replied, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry again. Whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. John 6:35

Some of the people who teach me the most about God are my 3-year-old niece and 6-year-old nephew. If you have kids, grandkids, nieces or nephews, or godchildren in your life, you can probably relate. Their childlike faith encourages me. I see myself in them, both the good and the bad. The world may quickly dismiss a 3-year-old and 6-year-old, but these are exactly who God uses to teach and stretch me. The truth is that God uses the “little” we have to offer and does more than we could ask, dream, or imagine.

John chapter six begins as Jesus is teaching a crowd of people. As He was teaching, He realized the crowd would soon become hungry and need something to eat. Andrew, one of Jesus’ disciples, noticed a boy in the crowd with five barley loaves and two fish. When Andrew said this, Jesus told His disciples to tell everyone in the crowd to sit down. This was a crowd of about 5,000 men, not including women and children! Next, a miracle unfolded. As Jesus prayed, He gave thanks for the food and passed the bread and fish throughout the crowd of people. As the food was passed out, every person in the entire crowd of people ate until they were full. After everyone had eaten, Jesus told His disciples to collect all of the leftover food. They filled twelve baskets with the leftover food. Everyone watching was amazed by this miracle.

The next day, some in the crowd who had seen Jesus multiply the fish and bread found Him. When they came, Jesus told them they had not come to see Him because of the miracle He had done, but because they had eaten the fish and bread He had multiplied (verse 26). He then commanded them, “Don’t work for the food that perishes but for the food that lasts for eternal life” (verse 27). Later on in this chapter, He proclaimed, “I am the bread of life… No one who comes to Me will ever be hungry, and no one who believes in Me will ever be thirsty again” (verse 35). Jesus was teaching them that although they were looking for physical bread, what they needed was spiritual bread, which only He provides. Spiritual bread includes the things of God that help us grow in our relationship with Him. These things can be teaching about the Bible, reading the Bible, listening to a worship song, and talking to others about God. All of those things help us to grow and know God more.

 You see, only Jesus is capable of truly satisfying and fulfilling us. He helps us grow in our relationship with Him. He sustains us. He fills us so that we are not satisfied with anything but Him, including relationships, material things, or any career achievement. Only Jesus can satisfy our deepest needs. So will you look to Him, the bread of life, for satisfaction and fulfillment today?

Moving toward action

You may feel like you don’t have much to offer, but God will use you in big ways if you make yourself available. Spend some time right now praying. Ask God to use you to make an impact for Him. Tell Him that you are available. Then, as you go throughout your day, look for ways to make Him known.

Going Deeper

John 6:1-42 (NLT)

"After this, Jesus crossed over to the far side of the Sea of Galilee, also known as the Sea of Tiberias. 2 A huge crowd kept following him wherever he went, because they saw his miraculous signs as he healed the sick. 3 Then Jesus climbed a hill and sat down with his disciples around him. 4 (It was nearly time for the Jewish Passover celebration.) 5 Jesus soon saw a huge crowd of people coming to look for him. Turning to Philip, he asked, “Where can we buy bread to feed all these people?” 6 He was testing Philip, for he already knew what he was going to do.

7 Philip replied, “Even if we worked for months, we wouldn’t have enough money to feed them!”

8 Then Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, spoke up. 9 “There’s a young boy here with five barley loaves and two fish. But what good is that with this huge crowd?”

10 “Tell everyone to sit down,” Jesus said. So they all sat down on the grassy slopes. (The men alone numbered about 5,000.) 11 Then Jesus took the loaves, gave thanks to God, and distributed them to the people. Afterward he did the same with the fish. And they all ate as much as they wanted. 12 After everyone was full, Jesus told his disciples, “Now gather the leftovers, so that nothing is wasted.” 13 So they picked up the pieces and filled twelve baskets with scraps left by the people who had eaten from the five barley loaves.

14 When the people saw him do this miraculous sign, they exclaimed, “Surely, he is the Prophet we have been expecting!” 15 When Jesus saw that they were ready to force him to be their king, he slipped away into the hills by himself.

16 That evening Jesus’ disciples went down to the shore to wait for him. 17 But as darkness fell and Jesus still hadn’t come back, they got into the boat and headed across the lake toward Capernaum. 18 Soon a gale swept down upon them, and the sea grew very rough. 19 They had rowed three or four miles when suddenly they saw Jesus walking on the water toward the boat. They were terrified, 20 but he called out to them, “Don’t be afraid. I am here!” 21 Then they were eager to let him in the boat, and immediately they arrived at their destination!

22 The next day the crowd that had stayed on the far shore saw that the disciples had taken the only boat, and they realized Jesus had not gone with them. 23 Several boats from Tiberias landed near the place where the Lord had blessed the bread and the people had eaten. 24 So when the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they got into the boats and went across to Capernaum to look for him. 25 They found him on the other side of the lake and asked, “Rabbi, when did you get here?”

26 Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, you want to be with me because I fed you, not because you understood the miraculous signs. 27 But don’t be so concerned about perishable things like food. Spend your energy seeking the eternal life that the Son of Man can give you. For God the Father has given me the seal of his approval.”

28 They replied, “We want to perform God’s works, too. What should we do?”

29 Jesus told them, “This is the only work God wants from you: Believe in the one he has sent.”

30 They answered, “Show us a miraculous sign if you want us to believe in you. What can you do? 31 After all, our ancestors ate manna while they journeyed through the wilderness! The Scriptures say, ‘Moses gave them bread from heaven to eat.’”

32 Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, Moses didn’t give you bread from heaven. My Father did. And now he offers you the true bread from heaven. 33 The true bread of God is the one who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”

34 “Sir,” they said, “give us that bread every day.”

35 Jesus replied, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry again. Whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. 36 But you haven’t believed in me even though you have seen me. 37 However, those the Father has given me will come to me, and I will never reject them. 38 For I have come down from heaven to do the will of God who sent me, not to do my own will. 39 And this is the will of God, that I should not lose even one of all those he has given me, but that I should raise them up at the last day. 40 For it is my Father’s will that all who see his Son and believe in him should have eternal life. I will raise them up at the last day.”

41 Then the people began to murmur in disagreement because he had said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven.” 42 They said, “Isn’t this Jesus, the son of Joseph? We know his father and mother. How can he say, ‘I came down from heaven’?”