In Matthew 14:13-14 we see that Jesus, having just heard that his cousin John the Baptist has been beheaded in prison, gets into a boat to set out for a “deserted place.” The crowd, however, figures out where he’s heading and actually beats him to the other side of the lake on foot. Instead of getting the space that He needs to mourn, grieve and reflect, He finds Himself thrust into a long day of ministry which culminates with the miracle of the loaves and fishes.
Jesus, in His humanity, was running on empty. He desperately needed quiet time alone. And yet the Bible says when He saw the crowd waiting for Him, He was “moved with compassion and He healed their sick.” It’s hard to have compassion on other people, it’s hard to go out of our way to help other people, when we are running on empty. And yet I’m convinced that when we give out of our emptiness, God positions us for an overflow.
Check out this short message below that I preached a few weeks ago on this subject: