Picture this scene described in the Gospels: Jesus has spent three days with multitudes of people, instructing them and healing all that were placed in his path. He doesn’t want them to leave hungry, but his disciples question where they will find enough food for everyone, because they are in the wilderness. They acknowledge having seven loaves of bread and a few small fish but are at a loss as to how that can help. Jesus commands the multitudes to sit down; he gives thanks; and he begins to divide the loaves and fish and passes them to the disciples to distribute to everyone. Once they have all eaten, there’s more food left than they started with (see Matthew 15:32–38).
Now imagine if the disciples hadn’t been motivated to distribute the food—to share this result of Jesus’ elevated understanding of God as the source of abundant good—but rather had sat among the thousands, wanting only to be fed. It seems absurd, doesn’t it? And yet one Saturday morning as I was reading a couple of articles from an issue of the Christian Science Sentinel (a sister publication of the Journal), this question came to my thought: Am I receiving this spiritual food as one of the multitude, or as a disciple?
Immediately I saw a parallel, and it has changed how I think about the Christian Science periodicals and my relationship with them. A few questions came to thought: