Tuesday, December 21, 2010

You give them something to eat -- Denles ustedes mismos de comer

This morning in my daily Bible reading, one of the passages I read was Luke 9, which tells the story of the feeding of the five thousand, the only miracle (apart from Christ's resurrection) that is recounted in all four canonical gospels. One thing that has drawn my attention many times, and really jumped out at me today, was verse 13:

     He replied, “You give them something to eat.”

The disciples were expecting Jesus to send the crowds away so they could buy food in the neighboring towns. But Jesus told His apostles to feed them. Once the disciples brought the five loaves and 2 small fish from their provisions, Jesus multiplied it so that everyone ate their fill. But Jesus didn't make the food appear out of nothing, nor did He turn stones into bread. He took what the disciples brought and made it more than sufficient.

When I come upon someone who is spiritually hungry and thirsty, what do I do? Do I just tell them to read the Bible, give them the number of pastor they can call, suggest they pick up the latest Christian best-seller, or encourage them to go to church next Sunday? Or do I take the time to really listen to them, and then do I give them something to eat? Do I make room in my schedule to share spiritual food with them?

But if I'm going to give them something to eat, I have to have food that I can share. For me to feed others, I have to regularly visit the storehouse of God's Word, and I have to be producing spiritual fruit that will nourish others. If I haven't been consistently collecting food through prayer and Bible study, I won't have anything to share with those who are hungry. But if I have something stored up and am willing to share it, presenting it to Jesus so He can use it, the Master will multiply it to meet the need of the hungry soul.

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Esta mañana en mi lectura Bíblica diaria, uno del los pasajes que leí fue Lucas 9, que cuenta la historia de la alimentación de los cinco mil, el único milagro (aparte de la resurrección de Cristo) que se recuenta en los cuatro evangelios canónicos. Un punto que me ha llamado la atención muchas veces, y que realmente se saltó de la página hoy, fue el versículo 13:

     "Denles ustedes mismos de comer" les dijo Jesús.

Los discípulos esperaban que Jesús enviara las multitudes a los pueblos cercanos para que comprasen algo de comer. Pero Jesús les dijo a sus apóstoles que les alimentaran. Cuando los discíuplos trajeron los cinco panes y dos pescaditos que había en sus provisiones, Jesús lo multiplicó hasta que todos se saciaron. Pero Jesús no creó la comida de la nada, y tampoco convirtió piedras en pan. Él tomó lo que trajeron los discípulos y lo hizo más que suficiente.

Cuando me encuentro con alguien que tiene hambre y sed espiritual, ¿qué hago? ¿Simplemente les digo que lean la Biblia, les doy el número de un pastor que pueden llamar, sugiero que compren el nuevo libro cristiano de más ventas, o les animo a asistir a la iglesia el siguiente domingo? ¿O tomo el tiempo para realmente escucharles, y después les doy yo algo de comer? ¿Hago espacio en mi agenda para compartir alimento espiritual con ellos?
Pero si les voy a dar algo de comer, primero tengo que tener comida que puedo compartir. Para que yo alimente a otros, tengo que visitar regularmente el almacén de la Palabra de Dios, y tengo que estar produciendo fruto espiritual que pueda nutrir a los demás. Si no he estado consistentemente colectando comida a través de la oración y estudio de la Palabra, no tendré nada para compartir con los hambrientos. Pero si tengo algo almacenado y estoy dispuesto a compartirlo, presentandolo a Jesús para que Él lo use, el Maestro lo multiplicará para saciar el alma hambrienta.

Monday, December 20, 2010

NLT Giveaway

I wanted to fill you in on an exciting contest that is currently being run and sponsored by the New Living Translation. We’re highlighting three ministries, Wycliffe Bible Translators, Oasis International, and The Dream Center, (click on the link to learn more details about these ministries) and by voting for one of these ministries you’ll be entered to win one of many prizes.


To enter, visit the NLT Facebook page by clicking here.

There are several levels of prizes you can win, here are the details:

With the Give the Word Bible Contest and Giveaway:

• Ministries win: Each time the NLT Facebook Page reaches a fan count milestone, votes will be tallied and the three ministries will receive cash donations from the New Living Translation and Tyndale House Publishers.

• Everyone wins: Everyone who enters on the Bible Contest website wins a free download of Matthew West reading the Christmas story.

• Daily NLT Study Bible winners: Vote on the NLT Facebook page and you will be entered to win two NLT Study Bibles—one to keep and one to give away. A new winner will be chosen every day.

• Weekly Give the Word Locally winners: Tell us about a deserving local ministry on the NLT Bible Contest website and they could win five NLT Study Bibles and $250 worth of NLT products.

• One Grand Prize winner will enjoy a unique trip customized just for them and their family (or three guests of their choice), to Wycliffe Bible Translators world headquarters and the WordSpring Discovery Center where they will experience firsthand the exciting world of Bible translation. The Grand Prize winner could also choose to donate the value of the trip--$2000--to Wycliffe instead.