I could hardly believe my eyes when I saw that baskets of food were left over.
I don’t think my mother will ever forget the lunch that she packed for me a few weeks ago—two fresh little brook trout, and five of those crunchy brown loaves made of barley. My favorites! Afterward when I told her all that had happened that day, she just laughed and said I must have been out there in the sun too long. Then the neighbors came over and started talking about the great miracle and she began to listen! Let me tell you about it.
When we heard that Jesus was in a desert area outside of our town, a few of us kids decided to go and hear Him. I’d heard Jesus once before, and I really liked Him. He tells a lot of neat stories and there’s usually a big crowd following Him.
I didn’t know when I would be home so my mother packed a lunch for me. My friends and I set off early that morning. Even so, the roads were already filled with people from around the countryside. They were all going to hear Jesus speak. It was hard to push past the crowd, but we did, and soon we were way ahead of most of them. That’s how we happened to get places to sit right behind Jesus and His disciples! When Jesus saw us spreading out our cloaks and sitting down, He smiled and seemed really glad to see us.
Though there was a huge crowd gathered by the time Jesus began to speak, everyone was quiet. Even the little children sat still and listened. Then something happened! A crippled man from our town hobbled over to where Jesus stood, and the next thing I saw was this man laughing and running! Just like that. Then more sick people came, and mothers with their babies. Jesus just stood there with His arms outstretched to them, touching and healing them.
I can tell you, the crowd was surely excited. They were praising God and singing songs. Some people were laughing, others were crying. Jesus seemed to know just what everyone needed. My friends and I just sat and watched it all. Nobody wanted to leave—it was too exciting!
It wasn’t until the sun was beginning to set that I even thought about my lunch, and then I realized I was really hungry. Hours and hours had gone by and I had forgotten all about it. Just as I looked around for some spot where I could slip away and eat, the little boy behind me told his mother that he was hungry. I heard her tell him she hadn’t brought any food, and he started to cry.
I saw some of Jesus’ disciples talking together. By leaning forward, I could hear what they were saying. “The people are hungry. Should we tell the Master?” One of them went over to Jesus and said, “It’s past meal time and there is nothing here for the people to eat. Send them away now so they can go to the village to buy food.”
That’s when I jumped up, the dusty brown knapsack containing the loaves and fishes in my hand. I tugged on one of the disciple’s sleeves. “Here’s some food. Maybe you can use this.” He looked at me for a moment, surprise on his face. Then suddenly he smiled. “Maybe,” he said softly.
Slipping away from the others he went over to where Jesus was standing. They talked quietly for a moment and then I saw Jesus bow his head over the knapsack. He reached inside.
It was then we saw the miracle with our own eyes. The next thing I knew, the disciples were taking pieces of the bread and fishes and handing them out to all those around Jesus. In a few moments we were sitting down munching on my mother’s home-baked barley bread. A big basket of my little trout was passed around next. Now, how can you explain something like that? The food just kept coming and I kept eating until I was stuffed, and so did everyone around me. There were even twelve baskets filled with the leftovers.
Jesus knew just what we needed—and He gave it to us through a miracle! Everyone in our town has been talking about it for days. One thing is sure. If Jesus cares enough to give food to that many people, I know He will take care of me.