On January 15, 2009, Us Airways Flight 1549 departed New York’s LaGuardia airport en route to North Carolina. A quick five minutes later, all 155 passengers and crew were floating in this plane on the Hudson River. Some passengers were even standing on the wings of the plane in extremely frigid 41 degree water!
On that cold day in January, Captain Chelsey “Sulley” Sullenberger made the decision to put the plane in the water after both engines were taken out by a flock of geese. Amazingly, all passengers survived! These passengers and crew now have a story to tell unlike any other about a near-tragic moment in the air many now call the “Miracle on the Hudson!” In what began as an ordinary day, quickly escalated to an extraordinary day these people will never forget!
Recorded in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John is a story about a boy who, like these passengers on Flight 1579, experienced something that turned his ordinary day into an extraordinary one. This story is the only miracle, other than the resurrection of Jesus, included in all four gospels.
In John 6, the Bible explains that over 5,000 people came to hear Jesus speak on a particular day. The boy was there too and had brought with him a mere snack of five loaves of bread and two pieces of fish. Jesus prayed and had his disciples distribute the food, and the Bible says that everyone ate as much as he or she wanted. Can’t you just see the young boy sitting there that day watching as thousands of people stuffed their faces with his lunch?
Here are four things I hope you’ll remember about the day I call the “Miracle on the Mountain”:
1. Jesus provides more than I need.
Culture tells us we can find fulfillment in the things of this world, but the Bible tells us that all the things of this world will eventually fade. This story is a great reminder that when Jesus is in charge He offers us more than we need and leaves us, as Matthew 14:20 says, completely “satisfied.”
2. Jesus can do the extraordinary with my ordinary.
Here’s a fun fact: Though all four gospels record this remarkable story, only one includes a specific component of the story: the boy! Obviously, this story is super important to God. Otherwise, it would not be the only miracle told in four different places in the bible. It’s interesting that only one disciple, John, mentioned the boy. We don’t know his name. As far as we know, he never becomes famous, and we never read about him again. However, this ordinary boy was used by God to do something extraordinary. You might never become famous in this life, but if you allow God to lead your life, He will do extraordinary things with your life!
3. Jesus invites me to join Him.
If you saw The Avengers End Game earlier this year, then you most likely remember the moment in the movie that everyone is still talking about – the moment when Iron Man proclaims, “I am Iron Man!” He then snaps his finger…and everything changes! Jesus could have snapped his finger and performed this miracle all on His own. But He didn’t. He invited His followers to help Him. Mark 6 tells us Jesus asks His disciples to distribute the food. He didn’t need the disciples to help Him pull this off. But He invited them to be a part of something truly special! He invites you to join Him, too! How? I don’t have that answer. However, I am confident that if you pray consistently and ask Him to show you ways to join Him, in His time and in His way Jesus will answer this question for you. Start asking!
4. Jesus expects me to say “yes.”
This story of ordinary to extraordinary would have never happened had the boy said no. Over 5,000 people were so glad he chose to let Jesus do the amazing in his life, and what a story he had to tell! Imagine what extraordinary moment in your life might be waiting to happen once you say “Yes!”