So often at restaurants, all the attention is paid to the chef. He or she is usually the one who conceptualized the dishes, tested them to find the right balance, and expedited on the line as your plate was put together. It’s their name on the menu (sometimes even on the restaurant’s sign), so it’s not surprising that they get the lion’s share of the glory.
But what would a chef be without waiters and waitresses?
The chef can work all manner of magic and create wondrous dishes back in the kitchen, but if there’s no one to deliver food to diners, that work is lost and no one gets to enjoy it.
To me, that’s what makes the disciples’ role in both the feeding of the 5,000 and the 4,000 so fascinating. Jesus created the food, but look what happens next: “Then He gave them (the loaves and fish) to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people.” (Matthew 14:19)
Of course, Jesus is not your typical chef. He has the power and the ability to both create and deliver food Himself. Heck, He could have just had the food appear in each person’s lap, eliminating the need for distribution entirely.
But He didn’t. He entrusted this critical role to the disciples. He wanted them to play a part in the story, to have ownership in this miraculous occasion.
I think the same applies to us today. Jesus doesn’t need you or I to tell others about the good news of His sacrifice. There are other – and probably easier and more effective ways – He could go about spreading His message.
Instead, He chose us to help Him. We are called to distribute His bread and fish to the hungry people of the world. He has entrusted us with the most important mission: to deliver this delicious, vast feast He’s created. This gives our lives meaning and allows us to play a crucial part in His story.
Don’t worry about creating a dish. Jesus has already done that, and now He’s given you the opportunity to serve it.