Summary: In parts of China, to ask a person how they are doing you ask them "Have you eaten?" Jesus gave the people bread to eat but He wanted to give them even more. He wanted to give them The Bread of Life that would satisfy their every need.

-Have you eaten?

-It’s kind of a silly question since I know most of you have probably eaten breakfast already

-But have you eaten? {PAUSE}

-Does anyone know any Chinese?

-I have a couple of friends one who was missionary in China and one who is a missionary in China

-They shared with me that in some parts of China in order to ask a person how they are doing, you don’t use the very natural ni hao (Are you well?) but instead you ask them, chifanle meiyou “Have you eaten?”

-So, have you eaten? {PAUSE}

-Our text today falls in line nicely with that phrase

-It continues right on the heels of our gospel lesson from last week where Jesus fed the 5,000 men not including the women and children that were likely there as well

-Our text continues with the people looking for Jesus and His disciples

-They are sailing all over the Sea of Galilee looking for them

-He jumps on the fact that they are looking for Him and turns it into a teaching point

-Don’t you just love that

-Jesus is like so many commanders

-You ask Him a question and He turns it into a lecture

-However, as you will see as we move through the next couple weeks there is more than a lecture at stake here

-Jesus is really not making a point as much as He is using the subject to point the people to Himself as the means of their salvation

-But they really have only one thing on their minds – their stomachs

-Isn’t that true of us so much of the time

-We are only interested in things that make a difference in our lives for the moment

-I’m as guilty as anyone

-People ask me often how I made the move from being an infantry officer to becoming a chaplain

-I know that it seems like such a drastic change but it didn’t happen overnight

-I do rightly point out to them that it is God that made the change in me

-However, I also very quickly point out that I took a huge pay increase when I came back on active duty 2 ½ years ago

-Is that the most important part of what I do?

-Is that the reason that I did it?

-Is that the most significant change that occurred?

-No, but one might think that it is by the way that I talk

-I guess that I’m guilty of not connecting the dots for people better and at least appearing to be too self-interested

-I should rightly point out how much my family had to scrimp and save and sometimes suffer as I pastored a new church start

-I should share how many trials and tribulations and some of the abuse that we endured at the hands of some of our very own church members

-That might actually better demonstrate to people how God blesses and rewards those that suffer for His name’s sake – not always in this life but certainly in the life to come

-How about you?

-Are you too self-interested?

-Are you too interested in only the physical, temporary things of life

-Are you too interested only in what goes into your stomach and not as interested in what happens to your soul? {PAUSE}

-You know it kind of rubs up against stewardship

-How God gives to us resources to guard and care for

-We certainly don’t starve here at Camp Bucca

-If anything we probably eat too well

-It’s amazing how much food we waste

-Take a look at the trays that people put up when they leave the dining facility

-See how much food they’ve wasted {PAUSE}

-In the movie “The Pursuit of Happyness”, Will Smith’s character, Christopher Gardner talks about how in the Declaration of Independence it talks about how all men have the God-given rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

-He rightly points out something that we know as Christians – happiness is an unattainable goal

-He says that happiness is pursued while life and liberty are constants

-Happiness is based off of one’s circumstances

-Joy, on the other hand, is not subject to circumstances

-The bible uses happy or happiness a total of 27 times. However, joy is used 242 times.

-That is why Jesus said that He came that we might have “life and have it to the full.”

-God is much more interested in our spiritual welfare than in our physical welfare. That doesn’t mean that He doesn’t care about our physical welfare. Not at all.

-Remember last week. First, Jesus served the people that all had enough to eat. However, He was not content to leave them there. He was more interested in what happened to them spiritually. {PAUSE}

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