Powerful insight I learned from my daughter Kayli – she is preparing to serve a mission for our church but has been spending the last year “kicking Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism in the pants”. One of her main concerns has been “How can I effectively help others when I myself struggle so much?” She writes:
I was reading in Matthew 14 when the following verses and thoughts stuck out to me:
The first thing was that Christ had just learned that John had been killed, yet in his time of grief, he had compassion on those who needed to feel his love and hear his teachings.
The next few verses say that after Christ taught the people for a time, his disciples asked him to send the multitude away so they could get food. But in verse 16 Jesus says, “They need not depart; give ye them to eat.” Notice how he gives his disciples an opportunity to feed his people?
Well, realizing they didn’t have enough for the multitude, in verse 17 they reply, “We have here but five loaves, and two fishes.”
This is where I really started thinking about how this applies to my life. Recently I have seen people who I love dearly struggling. I have wanted to erase their pain and lift their burdens, but at the same time I have been struggling myself. So then I beat myself up for not being enough—for only having five loaves and two fishes—when I know full well that there is yet a multitude to feed.
But in verses 18 and 19 it says, “[Christ] said, Bring them hither to me. And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the grass, and took the five loaves, and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed, and brake, and gave the loaves to his disciples, and the disciples to the multitude”.
When I read this next part, the realization came that I really don’t have sufficient strength to help anyone, including myself. But through my relationship with Christ, my small contribution can be turned into an abundance of “bread and fish”.
In verse 20 it says, “And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the fragments that remained twelve baskets full.”
The disciples of Christ gave all they had over to the Savior, who then fed the multitude and they still had twelve full baskets.
I get it now. If I just focus on my relationship with my Savior, give him everything I’ve got, he will multiply it and make my efforts even more than sufficient. Not only will I be able to help those around me without draining myself, but when all is said and done, there will still be even more to spare: “twelve baskets full”.
Talk about a miracle—not just for the disciples and the multitude, but for you and me, right here, right now. This is Rare Faith: believing that the impossible is possible and partnering with God to overcome every challenge. Thanks for letting me share this, Kayli. I love you!!