Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: You might have something in your hand which is insignificant to the world. Do you still want to hold on to it or let it become a blessing for others? How can you really impact with what is placed in your hand?

Opening illustration: In the Wizard of Oz … as the narrative winds down, every step of the way down the yellow brick road, Dorothy grows larger and larger, while the seemingly powerful adults around her grow smaller and smaller. Finally, the curtain falls away and she learns what all children eventually learn: that adults are very good persons, but very bad wizards. The Wicked Witch of the West sums up their impotence: "Who would have thought a good little girl like you could destroy my wickedness," and as she melts away, Dorothy grows up.

The same thing happens in our Scripture this morning. The big adult disciples melt into a puddle, while a little boy grows up into a giant of faith. This passage describes the only miracle of Jesus to be depicted in all four of the gospels. It really must have been something.

Introduction: In this narrative it seems that this young boy has come to this meeting without his parents and did not hesitate to give all that he had to Jesus. He did not consider all that he was entrusted with to hand over to Jesus. It may have even crossed his mind that this is just food and is not very important. He might have even thought what he would eat if I he gave everything to Jesus. He gave it away anyway. He did not hold back anything. The amazing thing is his giving to Jesus made all the difference. He set the bar for exemplifying before all the people and his giving became a blessing for all.

How can you impact with what is in your hand?

1. Don’t think it is Insignificant (vs. 8-10)

If you have studied business economics, there is the logic of the law of supply and demand: "On the demand side Lord, here are 5,000 ravenous people. On the supply side: 5 barley loaves and 2 fish. 5 + 2 does not equal 5,000. It's simple arithmetic, Lord. It can't be done. We might as well give up." According to the logic of the world, the supply from the lad is insignificant compared to the demand. Why should he even give it to Christ as he might not ever get it back and anyway it would not suffice for the abundant need of the entire crowd.

Many a times we may consider what is in our hands as unimportant and insignificant to the world therefore we think that God looks at it in the same manner. Apparently God’s ways are not our ways and neither does He think like us. For Him anything we have is game as this will show His glory through that insignificant thing that is in your hand.

So what is that thing that you have in your hand which seems insignificant, which you have already credited to be useless and say, ‘Oh God cannot use that! Are you out of your mind?’ Well He is God and you cannot make a judgement call on His behalf. He can use anything as He has made the world out of nothing. He just said it, and it was done. So who are we to say whether it is significant or not!

This is a time for us to not consider anything placed in our hands as insignificant as God can use anything for His purpose and glory. You see God delights in using ‘little people’ to accomplish great things, when they don’t even know that God is using them in this way!

Illustration: March of 1981, President Reagan was shot by John Hinckley, Jr., and was hospitalized for several weeks. Although Reagan was the nation’s chief executive, his hospitalization had little impact on the nation’s activity. Government continued. On the other hand, suppose the garbage collectors in this country went on strike, as they did in Philadelphia not long ago. That city was not only in a literal mess, but the pile of decaying trash quickly became a health hazard. A three-week nationwide strike would paralyze the country. Who is more important—the President or a garbage collector? In the body of Christ, seemingly insignificant ones are urgently needed. As Paul reminds us, “The head cannot say to the feet, ‘I don’t need you!’ On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable (I Corinthians 12:21–22).”

2. Don’t hold on to it! Surrender to God (v. 11)

No one in this multitude, it seems, except this lad, brought anything to eat. Whether this was a lunch his parents put up for him, or what he brought along with him to sell, we do not know. The fact that he had the loaves and fishes is mentioned to Christ who considered the fact of some importance. For He called the boy to Him, and then took what he had, and made his few loaves and fishes answer for the wants of all. Nor could anyone have been more astonished than the boy himself to see how those loaves and fishes lasted. Christ can use children if they are willing, and sometimes they have been of great service. He can use their gifts, whether they be the pennies which they have earned, or some piece of handiwork they have made. None are too young to serve Jesus, and such have often been employed by Him to accomplish good.

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