"When I brake the five loaves among five thousand, how many baskets full of fragments took ye up? They say unto him, Twelve. And when the seven among four thousand, how many baskets full of fragments took ye up? And they said, Seven" Mark 8:19, 20.
Twice Jesus worked a miracle of multiplying the loaves and the fishes to feed the multitude. Have you ever wondered why our miracle working Savior didn't make just the exact amount needed for the crowds rather than having leftovers? Certainly that would have been in the realm of possibility. So, why the fragments?
In meeting any of our needs, God's provisions are more than ample, such as that made for our salvation. "The Lord . . . is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance" 2 Peter 3:9, and yet Jesus Himself said "strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it" Matthew 7:14. He, in every way, "is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think" Ephesians 3:20. No one can claim that His provision for us is lacking. It is always above and beyond, and so, the fragments.
That Jesus had the fragments gathered is a lesson in both order and economy. Nothing should be wasted. It's part of good stewardship. "He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much" Luke 16:10.
In each feeding miracle, the disciples received the food from Jesus to distribute to the multitude. They also gathered the fragments following the meal which were likely further distributed to various members of the crowd to take home to others. While they were able to share the blessing of the food, they could not have shared it without the original Giver who stated, "without me ye can do nothing" John 15:5. How important that we all realize that we receive to impart. "But he that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord" 2 Corinthians 10:17. Yes, the glory goes to the Lord, but there is, indeed, a blessing in sharing what we have received. "Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom" Luke 6:38.