… When it grew late, his disciples came to him and said, “This is a deserted place, and the hour is now very late; send them away so that they may go into the surrounding country and villages and buy something for themselves to eat.” But he answered them, “You give them something to eat.” They said to him, “Are we to go and buy two hundred denarii worth of bread, and give it to them to eat?” And he said to them, “How many loaves have you? Go and see.” When they had found out, they said, “Five, and two fish.” Then he ordered them to get all the people to sit down in groups on the green grass. So they sat down in groups of hundreds and of fifties. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to his disciples to set before the people; and he divided the two fish among them all. And all ate and were filled; and they took up twelve baskets full of broken pieces and of the fish. Those who had eaten the loaves numbered five thousand men.
Mark 6 (NRSV)
The source of food in the United States today is just as important as it was on the day that Jesus and his disciples fed a crowd of at least 5,000, taking a few fish and a few loaves and in making themselves available to God had plenty, with baskets of scraps to take away.
Explaining the mechanics of the miracle is impossible, but the willing work of those tired disciples allowed them to become God’s methods in doing what’s necessary – handing out the food handed to them by Jesus, even though they had expressed high anxiety about how they could feed so many with so little.
Food in the United States is no less important, and every source of food to feed hungry people should be used as a meal for millions.
People used as God’s methods aren’t limited to biblical stories. The possibility is always present, including the enlightened use of pubic policy to use the excess productivity of the agricultural economy to feed hungry and malnourished people in a huge variety of programs.
Jesus did not apply a litmus test.
People of faith and good will can be used to shape public policy for the greater good; maintaining strong feeding and nutrition programs from the national bounty is one way to feed the hungry and do right for all God’s people.