Saturday, 23 April 2011


One of the best known stories about Jesus is that which we normally refer to as the 'feeding of the five thousand'.  In the story a small boy's lunch is multiplied up so that there is enough for the whole crowd to have something to eat - and plenty to spare.  There are various theories as to how this happened.  In the end the 'how' is not the important thing - what matters is that it did happen, and it serves as a reminder of how God multiplies his love towards us.

The principle of God's multiplication is one of the great things of our faith.  God's blessings are abundant - and are always becoming more abundant.

Near the end of his Confessions, Augustine makes some reference to this idea of God's multiplication.  "I know that a truth which the mind understands in one way only can be materially expressed by many different means, and I also know that there are many different ways in which the mind can understand an idea that is outwardly expressed in one way.  Take the single concept of the love of God and our neighbour.  How many different symbols are used to give it outward expression!  How many different languages have words for it and, in each of them, how many different forms of speech there are by which it can be conveyed!"  (Book 13, Section 24)

He goes on to talk about God giving "increase and multiplication" by enabling us to draw a range of different and relevant things from a single source - "I believe .. you granted us the faculty and the power both to give expression in many different ways to things which we understand in one way only and to understand in many different ways what we find written obscurely in one way."

Indeed, God allows us to see things from so many different angles, and enables a huge broadening in the range of our perspectives.  Are there things that we, at the moment, need to see in a different way?

1 comment:

Clarence Heller said...

Of course! And so I pray for openness, courage and generosity...and I choose to trust God again and again and again.