So He commanded the multitude to sit down on the ground. And He took the seven loaves and gave thanks, broke them and gave them to His disciples to set before them; and they set them before the multitude – Mark 8:6
Oftentimes when a child is restless, agitated or too playful, the parent’s way of calling the child to order is to give a firm command, “Sit down!” Classroom Teachers also employ this tact in restoring order to a class. It is true that when we sit down, we tend to reason better and think our way through the many huddles of life. Also, God employs this simple but workable method to restore order to His troubled Children.
We see this in Jesus’ feeding the multitude. After a brief contemplation with His disciples, seven loaves with few fishes were made available for the multitude. Considering their number and the tired and hungry situation, the food would have been grossly inadequate. Contrary to the limitations of human reasoning, Jesus already knowing what to do to feed the multitude gave a command. This two word command, “Sit down” was profound in restoring order and calmness in the midst of this hungry multitude. As hungry and tired as they were, He was going to test their patience and obedience at the brink of the miracle.
The Futility of Life’s Struggles Without Christ
Today, the world is full of struggles for survival as men are always busy trying to ‘make ends meet’. Many a person lives under self-imposed pressure of how to measure up with the fast pace world – pay home bills, children’s school fees, get a well-paying job, meeting up with work or business targets, all of these translating into a life in an endless roller coaster.According to the World Health Organization’s recent statistics, 1 out of every 4 women and 1 out of every five men have high blood pressure, and this is largely due to stress and anxiety over the cares of this world.So also is the rate of depression, as statistics also has it that about 264 million people worldwide are depressed. We also see a rise in the rate of suicide which is the second cause of death globally as currently reported. Men’s fear has further been aggravated by the current global pandemic disease plaguing the world. With close to a million people already infected, and billions more living in fear and uncertainty, the fear and trauma of Covid-19 is causing more harm than the disease itself. In the Words of the Saviour, “All these are [just] the beginning of sorrow” – Matthew 24:8. As we swiftly approach the end, life will get messier by the day, but there is solace. This solace is only in Christ; in Him alone we find true rest just as He said and still beckons, “Come to Me, all you who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” – Matthew 11:28. The rest He gives suffices for all life’s woes. The peace He gives is second to none other, and transcends all of life’s challenges. He is the only succor for such a time as this. He still beckons, ‘COME’.
What ‘Sit Down’ Implies
In our main text, we saw the Master instructing the multitude to sit down. In this case, sit down implies; stay calm, relax, rest your strength on Him, and be orderly and composed. If we must get God’s attention, we must learn to sit down or stay calm in the midst of an increasingly agitated world. Mary sat at the Master’s feet to hear God’s Word, and was commended above her sister Martha (Luke 10:38-42). Many times, we’re too busy like Martha expending precious energy on things that don’t matter, rather than staying calm. You achieve nothing by worrying, therefore, stay calm.
The Need to Stay Calm
We sometimes miss out on God’s best due to our inability to sit down and learn of Christ. If God’s sufficiency must be manifested in our deficiency, then we ought to stay calm. What lesson does God want us to learn here? When you’re troubled, stay calm! When you’re agitated with the cares of this life, stay calm! When you do not know what to do, stay calm! When it seems all hope is lost, sit down at the Master’s Feet! Yes, sit down because there is light at the end of the tunnel. Stay calm because God is for you even if the whole world seems to be against you. Stay calm because there is hope. Stay calm because God says so.
The Way to Staying Calm
Finally, how can we find calmness in such a busy world?
- Repent of your sins and accept the Lord Jesus as your personal Lord and Saviour – Acts 2:38
- Trust in the LORD with all your heart – Proverbs 3:5-7
- Believe and live on God’s promises (Word of God), knowing that His Word is more real than the present situations around you – Acts 2:39; Hebrews 11:6
- Pray about everything – Philippians 4:6
- Stay in fellowship with other believers and be encouraged – Hebrews 10:25
- Be engaged with the work of the Ministry – Colossians 4:17
And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Jesus Christ – Philippians 4:7