God's Math

Jon Opgenorth

READ : John 6:1-14

“There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish. But what are they among so many people?” (v. 9)

“Dad, I know what I want for my birthday.”

Lauren’s statement seemed normal—pretty typical for a teenager to tell you what she wants for her birthday. But this was different. Lauren’s birthday wouldn’t come for four more months and the request she made was not your typical teenage wish.

“I want one hundred dollars.” “What?” I thought. “One hundred dollars?! We don’t do $100 gifts for birthdays in our family. What could you possibly be thinking?”

Her answer humbled me. “I want to give it to Titus. I don’t need anything. I have all I need. Can I give $100 to Titus for his teen outreach center?”

How could a dad say “no”? Four months later, the wish still stood. A one-hundred-dollar bill traveled with a person going to Uganda.

One hundred dollars isn’t going to finish a building or feed all the hungry of Uganda. But God’s math is different than ours. Where we add, God multiplies. A boy gives five loaves and two fish; God feeds five thousand. Imagine what God can do with a teenager’s birthday present.

Imagine what he can do with you. No gift offered in faith is too small for God.


Gracious God, multiply our meager gifts to fulfill your incredible purposes.