Friday, November 11, 2011


Checking Our Reserves

How often as parents do we take stock of the resources we have at hand and realize there is not nearly enough to meet the need? We check our reserves of patience, wisdom, energy, answers, and even love, and become acutely aware that we don't have anywhere near enough to give to the situation at hand. I've never had to feed 5000+ hungry people with five loaves of bread and a couple of small fish, but certainly I have looked at the needs of our children, the complicated issues of life, and seen a massive need, intimidating in it's nature and impossible in the natural. 

Maybe today you are facing a similar situation in your family. The scenarios are endless-- a child with desperate and pressing emotional or physical needs, an adoption process that is stalled by laws and policy changes, a marriage stretched to it's thinnest and threatening to tear, or just an exhaustion both physical and emotional from the strain of parenting an adoptive family. How exciting it is to stand in that place of impossibility and hear Jesus say, "Where shall we buy bread, that these may eat?" (John 6:5) John tells us that Jesus asked this question, knowing what He would do, but wanting to test the disciples. Most often my initial response is like Phillip's, naming the lack in it's detail, focusing on the seeming chasm between the need and the provision at hand. "Philip answered, 'Two hundred silver pieces wouldn't be enough to buy bread for each person to get a piece.'" (John 6:7)

Back in Your Hands

We look around us and gather up what we have at hand and explain to the Lord that there is no way we can do this. What we bring to the issue is so inadequate to meet the need. Bread and fish are a good start for feeding people, just as the good parenting ideas you have and the love you bring to your family are exactly along the lines of what is needed. But we cry out, "Lord it is not enough!" I so love the exchange that happens next. Jesus says, give me what you've got my son, my daughter. He thanks God for it-- for remember, what you have to give is of value and worth-- and puts it right back in your hands to distribute to your family. 

The Exchange

And in this exchange, as we apply faith to our parenting, we see God do miracles of provision in our homes. I want to encourage you today that whatever it is you have to bring, whatever you have in your hands, is exactly the material God wants to utilize to provide for the demanding need. It was the disciples themselves who fed that crowd of hungry people-- not Jesus. You and I have what it takes to provide for every need in our homes. As we partner with God to raise our children we will see what a joy it is to make that wonderful exchange and to operate in power for the good of our families! 

The Excess!

This past weekend we sang a song at our church that captivated me, "You turn the water into wine." I got so excited about that! Jesus took water, which was a common, available, everyday necessity at that wedding (John 2) and turned it into something of significant value, something effective and appropriate for the occasion. The thing that was at hand was good, but the exchange was way better! The wine enhanced that wedding-- it was extravagant and beyond the expectation of the hosts or guests, just as the 12 baskets of left-over bread were evidence that God intends not only to meet your needs, but to do so in excess! Don't you think it was crazy good to have all that bread left over?! Or to have the best wine reserved for the end of the celebration? Why would God do that? What outrageous goodness does He have in mind for your family, for your children, for your marriage?!

We are believing God for things in our children way greater than the results of our good parenting, way beyond the effects of our great love for them! Because He is that way! Let us believe together as Hope at Home Families.

Father God, when we look to You we are not overwhelmed by the need in our lives, but indeed we are overwhelmed by Your Goodness and Your plans to prosper our families and Your extravagant provision. Lord would you manifest this provision in each family this day. Thank You God that you take the bread and fish we have in our hands to bring to the need and You make it more than enough. In Faith we believe you for this exchange this day in each family and for each need. Amen.

You can watch the main sessions from our Hope at Home 2011 Conference by clicking HERE. You will find encouragement to believe God for turning water into wine and loaves into a feast!


  1. I love this. Thank you for the encouragement. I love our Lord Jesus's first miracle. It always reminds me of the way he changes our hearts as well, as only he can. How can we not have hope when the Lord is with us? Praise God! He is so good and faithful and gracious!

  2. Amen! You are so right-- He changes our hearts as well. I am SO thankful for that! So GOOD to us!