What Jesus Did! 'Leftovers!' — John 6:12-13

Monday, April 23, 2018

All the people had enough to eat. When they finished, Jesus said to his followers, "Gather the pieces of fish and bread that were not eaten. Don't waste anything." So the followers gathered up the pieces that were left. The people had started eating with only five loaves of barley bread. But the followers filled twelve large baskets with the pieces of food that were left.
— John 6:12-13 NLT
Illustration of John 6:12-13 NLT — "Gather the pieces of fish and bread that were not eaten. Don't waste anything."

Key Thought

Some leftovers I love. Others I can do without. These leftovers are marvelous. I especially love the fact that there are 12 baskets of leftovers, one for each of the apostles! I really don't think Jesus' main concern was leaving a mess. No, I believe he wanted to leave an indelible memory on the men who would be faced with impossible challenges and situations that they couldn't begin to handle. This one memory would remind them again and again that the power was from Jesus, not from them. They had picked up the scraps with their own hands. They had carried the baskets. They had seen the picnic lunch shared by the boy that had fed the thundering hoard. Those leftovers were the tangible grace of Jesus left for them to touch. Nothing could be a more powerful reminder that their meager resources, touched with prayer, could meet the needs of others and much, much more.

Today's Prayer

Father, let me experience the leftovers of your mighty work after having stepped out in faith. I believe you can move mountains, heal diseases, and perform works that I neither can comprehend nor imagine. But, dear Father, I am always happy to pick up the leftovers from such an event! Show me the leftovers. In Jesus name I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Luke 6:38
  • 2 Corinthians 6:6-15
  • 2 Corinthians 4:5-7


About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.