Provision Every Day
“Give us this day our daily bread.”
We prayed this a lot last year – for all kinds of things: toilet paper, eggs, hand sanitizer, lysol. A year ago, as I was itching to get out of my house, I would have never thought of praying for things like “energy to interact with people out of my bubble”. We could have never known last March, all the things we would need in the coming year.
In the book of Exodus, after God rescued Israel from Egypt, he led them into the wilderness. Before long, the people are grumbling about how hungry they are. God hears their cry & rains down bread from heaven.
For 40 years.
He tells them not to save any of it until the morning – except on the sabbath. I’ve always thought of this as a test – will you listen to my instructions or not? But the other day, I was thinking about how stressful it would have been if God told the people, “I’m going to rain down bread, gather everything you need to make it all the way through the desert.” Or even, “Get what you need for this year” or “this month”. Can you imagine managing all those supplies as you wander around the desert? Don’t lose any. Make sure it doesn’t get stolen. Hope you ration it out properly. What a burden!
Maybe the fact that God only gives supplies one a day at a time is actually a kind gift. He knows how exhausting planning for an unknown future is, so he says “Why don’t you let me carry the supplies? I’ll be right here tomorrow (& the next day) to provide what you need.”
There are so many heavy needs these days – things we couldn’t have planned for last March. Next March, there will be things we can’t even imagine yet. It can be really hard to trust we’ll have what we need down the road. It can be really tempting to try to plot & plan & try to make sure it’s all there, but that’s a really heavy burden. Your heavenly Father desires to provide for you. Not only that, but he’s offering to walk along with us & carry the burden of the provisions & dole it out in manageable qualities. We don’t have to fear what tomorrow brings, because no matter what it holds, Jesus will be there, ready to provide whatever we need. He’ll even do the heavy lifting.
The Lord said to Moses, "I have heard the grumbling of the Israelites. Tell them, ‘At twilight you will eat meat, and in the morning you will be filled with bread. Then you will know that I am the Lord your God'…" The Israelites ate manna forty years, until they came to a land that was settled; they ate manna until they reached the border of Canaan.
– Exodus 16:11-12; 35