I guess most have heard the story about how Jesus fed the 5000 men (plus women and children) with 5 loaves of bread and 2 fish. But then the story continues to tell how after everyone was fed and Jesus had preached to them and stuff, Jesus leaves everyone. And, as so often before, He goes up into the mountain to be alone. (I love how the Bible tells again and again how Jesus before or after big events went to be alone with God. When He needed it, how much more don´t I..?) The story goes on telling how, when evening came, the disciples went down to the lake. It was dark, Jesus had not come yet, and maybe they felt a storm coming on. So they decided to go on to cross the lake without Him. You´ve probably also heard the story of how Jesus then came walking to them on the water, probably almost scaring them to death before they realized who it was..
But the story goes on, and tells how the next day, the people started looking for Jesus where He had given them food. But He wasn´t there, they knew there had been only one boat, and they had seen the disciples leave without Him. They went over to the other side, and found Jesus there. When they did, they asked Him, ”when did You get here?” and I just love how He replies. Of course He could have gone on telling about this amazing miracle when He walked on water, and I can imagine the disciples jump in, telling how truly great it was, how scared they were (although some probably would pretend to have been brave..) and how even Peter tried to walk to Him on the water as well (even though John actually doesn´t write the bit about Peter). He could have really painted a picture of how great He is, and how He rules over everything, even nature. And then try to make them realize for real who He actually was. But no, Jesus doesn´t say anything about that. He goes on, almost rebuking them; saying ”you´re looking for me only because I fed you for free...” (the maria translation...) It goes on in John 6:27-30 ””Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him God the Father has placed his seal of approval.” then they asked him, ”what must we do to do the works God requires?” Jesus answered, ” the work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.” so they asked him, ”What sign then will you give that we may see it and believe you?” ” and they go on into a debate about the manna the Israelites ate in the desert and so on. But through it all, it seems like Jesus is trying to make them realize this; It´s not about what work I do, or what Jesus does, all it comes down to, is who do I believe? Where do I put my trust? It´s not about signs, wonders, miracles, and all that stuff. All it really comes down to, is who do I believe? Do I put Jesus first, at the center of everything?
The vision of my church starts with: ”We see a Jesus-loving church...” and I just love that. A Jesus-loving church will always have Him as the center, will always start with Him, and end with Him. And then, yes, I really believe the signs, wonders and miracles will come. But it´s not built around that. It´s built on Him. I don’t know about you, but that´s how I want to live my life. Always choosing Him first, have Him as the center of my life. Whatever that might mean, and whatever that might look like. It might mean making some choices that are different, it might mean to get up a bit earlier just to spend some time with Him first thing in the morning, it might look like giving up something I really think I want… It might not always seem like the easy way, but in the end, I’m certain it’ll be the best way. Whatever it will be like, I want my prayer to be, today and every day: “Give me Jesus, only Jesus!”