“When the people had eaten their fill, he said to his disciples, ‘Gather the leftovers so nothing is wasted.’ They went to work and filled twelve large baskets with leftovers from the five barley loaves.” John 6:12-13
I hear people say, “We don’t eat leftovers.” My response, “Really? You throw out leftovers? Give them to me!” I believe people that waste food never felt real hunger. Often, when I end up with more leftovers than I care to eat, I wrap them up and take them to one of my single friends. They are new to them and much appreciated.
This morning as I scraped the last bit of soft butter from the wax paper wrap, the quote, “Waste not; want not” ran through my mind. I grew up with leftover–as many as one could have feeding three growing boys. We looked forward to hash made out of the potatoes and roast beef, fried potatoes, and meatloaf cubed and tossed into pasta sauce. I’m a clever leftover cook and can make something new out of something we’d eaten a day or two earlier. When you toss a leftover Costco-style rotisserie chicken into a stew pot with water, you’ll have a great broth ready for your favorite chicken soup creation.
God showed us how to use leftovers. From two fish and five barley loaves of bread fed 5000 people, and when the leftovers were gathered, twelve large baskets of bread were saved for another day.
Lord, teach us to want not by being less wasteful with food. Amen.