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Scripture Reflection - July 29, 2018

2 Kings 4:42-44 Psalm 145 Ephesians 4:1-6 John 6:1-15

Today’s readings make us think of the following: when we know we have enough, when we are satisfied, when we are full, when we share, a hand reaching out giving sustenance and then another hand passing that sustenance to the next until all are satisfied.

The first reading from Kings and Psalm 145 both foreshadow sustenance in today’s Gospel. Elisha instructs the servant to give twenty barley loaves made from the first fruits and fresh grain to an assembly of 100 people proclaiming God’s words: “They shall eat, and there shall be some left over...” The psalm reminds us that “the hand of God feeds us, and God answers all our needs.” Through a prophet and a psalmist, we are reminded of God’s bountiful love.

St. Paul’s message in the second reading is “God over all, through all, and in all!” This message calls us to unity with one another through our faith and the grace of baptism. To truly witness that grace, we are called to live a life filled with humility, gentleness, patience, and love to make God’s desire for unity visible.

Most importantly, this is witnessed by Jesus in today’s Gospel. What was Jesus most concerned about with this crowd gathered before him? Certainly, their hunger for Jesus’ words but more immediately their physical hunger. Jesus showed humility by inviting a young child to offer the loaves and fishes by giving them over to be blessed, broken, and shared. Jesus’ actions demonstrated patience with the apostles who doubted the possible; gentleness in instructing the crowd to recline and rest; and unbound compassion by distributing what little there was, thereby opening the hands of those around Jesus to do the same.

In the days ahead can we too become an instrument of miracles by opening our hands and hearts to the multitudes in our lives! In these times of doubt, derision, and division; can we bear witness and provide examples of humility, gentleness, patience, love, and welcome to the strangers around us? Are we willing to share until all are filled and nourished with God’s love? Like the child, are we willing to give over our baskets to share and be part of the miracles before us every day? Let us pray for one another that we too, can be part of this distribution of Eucharistic faith and love.

Sister Joan Agro, O.P.


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