How Can We Feed Them All?
That’s a bit of how I felt these past few weeks as we pulled into the parking lot of a large apartment complex filled with hungry and isolated people from all around the world. Oh Lord, these people need to know about you! How will our 50 bags of groceries feed all of these people?
The disciples must have felt something like this when Jesus asked them to find food for the 5,000 who had gathered to hear him speak. John writes, “Lifting up his eyes, then, and seeing that a large crowd was coming toward him, Jesus said to Philip, “Where are we to buy bread, so that these people may eat?” (John 6:5). Philip had no idea how they were going to do it. Then, in verse 6 John says that Jesus “said this to test him, for he himself knew what he would do.”
In the midst of the uncertainty of illness, work layoffs, economic hardships and the isolation that so many are facing around the world, I need to be reminded that Jesus already has a plan and that he knows what he is going to do!
We are so thankful that Jesus has a plan and that he invites us to participate in it. Together with others, we are sharing God’s love in tangible ways with our neighbors here in San Antonio as well as in other countries through the sacrificial service of our international partners.
Arto and Anna’s plan was simple, “We want to carry out a program with God’s help and blessing. It’s for 42 families who have a deprived social background, children who are fatherless or motherless, or live with grandparents or with disabled parents. With God’s guidance we would like to buy food and deliver it, because they are not able to do so due to COVID-19.”
Arto and his family prayed and God provided resources to purchase food. “We have already packed the supplies for the families I have told you about. The weight for each package is about 16 kg: rice, nuts, sugar, oil, macaroni, tomato, condensed milk, pasta, waffles, flour, peas and so on.”
God did help and blessed their work. Arto writes, “Thank you very much for your prayer and gifts. We delivered food for twenty families in Gyumri. As I told you before these are fatherless families or orphans. One family of four said, ‘God sent this food just in time.’ Then, we visited the next 22 families in Jermuk. Little David got very happy to have this support for his family, besides it was his birthday. He made a wonderful prayer and sang ‘Our father.’ Let all of this be for the glory of Jesus in everything. Keep on praying for these families, for His grace and mercy, so that these families come to God.”
We thank the Lord for Arto and Anna. It is our prayer that as we lift up these offerings of food and loving care, God will bless these families and multiply the Gospel throughout our communities.
Here are some ways that you can be praying:
- Pray for the ongoing ministries of Arto and Anna in Armenia: Ask God to bless and multiply the supplies that are distributed to these and many more families as they see God at work in their lives.
- Pray for wisdom and God’s provision for the pastoral couples: When businesses and churches are closed in other countries, it stresses both the livelihood and the ministries of pastoral couples. Pray for God to provide for their needs and for wisdom in best serving their congregations.
- Pray that God would keep the doors open for us to go to Georgia in September: Our team continues to prepare and we trusting that God will lead our paths.
As these days call for us to act with an “abundance of caution,” may our lives also be characterized by an “abundance of faith.” Jesus really does change everything!
Grace to you and peace from God our Father,
And the Shepherds’ Support Board:
Steve and Connie Troxel
David and Beth Butler
Jack and Nancy Shirley
Sid and Zane Williams
Daniel and Kate Wurzberg