12 Late in the afternoon the Twelve came to him and said, “Send the crowd away so they can go to the surrounding villages and countryside and find food and lodging, because we are in a remote place here.” 13 He replied, “You give them something to eat.”
You can imagine how the disciples felt. They had just finished their first day in ministry preaching the good news and healing all who came to them. When they came back to Jesus they reported to him everything they had done. They had that satisfying feeling after a productive day at work. But there was only one problem, the rumor got out and the crowds found them. They wanted more.
But instead of sending them away, Jesus shared the good news about the kingdom, and healed all who came to him. The disciples realizing it as getting late and they would be hungry and need a place to stay. You can imagine them thinking, "Jesus we've had a great today but we think it is time to knock it off and take it easy. Send these people away so we can relax. To this Jesus replies, "You give them something to eat!" The disciples must have been thinking, "Really Jesus, there were 5,000 people there!"
We've all been there haven't we? We tired, ready to go home, and someone wants something from us. If we were honest we might be thinking, "Why can't they get something to eat for themselves." This is when Jesus might say to you, "You give them something to eat!" And we want to say, "Really Jesus!" But then we remember that thing Jesus mentioned about picking up your cross if you really want to follow him. And, if you want to save your life, then lose it.
It has been my experience that in that moment if you listen to that voice that says, "you give them something to eat", and help the person in need, it is always worth it. God gives you that little extra in your tank just like he multiplied the fish and the loaves. You realize it is not you that fed the person but God working through you. So while there is certainly nothing wrong with relaxing and resting after a hard day's work, sometimes Jesus brings someone to us and says, "you give them something to eat!"