“He said this to test him, because he himself knew what he was going to do.”

Today’s gospel gives us the multiplication of loaves and fishes to feed the five thousand (Jn 6:1-15).  Jesus notes the multitude following Him and questions Philip about where they can buy food to feed them all (as a test — see above).  Incredulous, Philip says they do not have anywhere near the money to purchase even a little bit for all to eat.  Andrew points out a boy with five loaves and two fish.  After blessing the food it was distributed so that all had enough with twelve baskets left over.  The amazed people call Jesus the Prophet, so He slips away alone so they would not carry Him off to make Him king.  It is interesting that Jesus chose to test one of the Twelve (who were His closest collaborators).  Philip knew what Jesus could do — he had seen plenty of miracles at Jesus’ hands.  Yet, even Philip could not contemplate how the multitude could be fed.  At least Andrew came up with something, maybe hoping that Jesus could do something with it.  When Jesus tests our faith, let’s hope we come up with the response we wish Philip and the others would have had: “We cannot make this happen but we have seen your mighty deeds Lord and know that you can do anything for those faithful to you.”  We know of Jesus’ great works throughout time, in others, and in our own lives.  When He exercises our faith, let us answer: “Thy will be done” (Mt 6:10), knowing that God is faithful to those who place complete trust in Him.  Our reward will be great in heaven (Mt 5:12), even if it turns out that we never perceive it here on earth.

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