A feeling of expectancy fills the air as

hundreds of people stream into the fields ahead.

Bright sunshine reflects the dew on verdant grasses

and fragrant flowers stitched into the meadow.


Just over the next hill a platform comes into view

where an enthusiastic crowd had gathered.

One by one people are led up the steps and The Nurse

reverently injects the serum with a prayer.


Then the audience bursts into applause and thankful

spirits rise in response to the joyous occasion.

    Cheering spontaneously for others, as they’d been

              applauded, keeps the energy level high.


A makeshift café is spotted when finally

returning to the car. How could we have missed

such an enticing aroma when making our

way to the vaccination celebration?


Flipping the fluffiest of pancakes is Jesus

 the head cook. Eggs to order, fresh juices, hot drinks,

baskets with berries and jars of warm maple syrup

are presented as soon as comfy seats are found.


Friends and family are sharing from their hearts what

their lives and their awesome God mean to them

expressing thanks for this wonderful brunch that is

simply given to those who come for their vaccination.


Jesus is filling the people who have waited

forever and a day and who’ve craved this day so much.

In this moment Jesus is here, filling the folks

 with hope for today and beauty that is to come.


This scene repeats day after day, week after week.

Winter flows into spring, summer, and fall

In cities and villages across every continent

until at last, enough are protected and

 this pandemic is declared over and done with.



Imaginatively reading the Feeding of the 5,000 from Matthew 14:14-18 (CEB) inspired the above poem.                               “When Jesus went ashore, he saw a great crowd, and had compassion for them                                                                    and cured their sick. When it was evening, the disciples came to him and said,                                                                    “This is a deserted place, and the hour is now late; send the crowds away so that they may go into the villages                       and buy food for themselves.” Jesus said to them,                                                                                                                “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.” They replied,                                                                               “We have nothing here but five loaves and two fish.” And he said, “Bring them here to me…”

The feeding of the 5,000 is a familiar one to us and never fails to fill us with awe at the compassion that Jesus shows the people. Give the people what they need. Use what is available. Pray. God will bless it and there will be more than enough.

This Season of Lent, the practice of gratitude feels right. I have a deep sense of thankfulness for…

  • everybody who has practiced good measures this past year and kept the global pandemic from being worse.
  • the health care professionals, the grocery store workers, and the lumber yards, without whom some would have suffered even more.
  • brave ones who endured vaccine trials and scientists who worked overtime.
  • those that have literally fed the 5,000+ during these months.
  • scriptures that open our eyes to the miracles about us and God’s compassionate and abundant love.

Dear Ones, may God’s love fill you with abundant hope for this day.

Rev. Marta Wheeler