Do you ever read parts of the Bible and it doesn’t really make any sense? You want to find significance in every verse and become a spiritual Titan, but you leave the Word mostly confused, but feeling dignified that you were a “good Christian” and did your daily diligence of reading? 😉 That was me. #guilty
But yesterday, during my morning time with the Lord, I was reading in Exodus 16 (only one chapter at a time now, since I am trying to escape my perfectionism of reading ALL the things) In this story, it talks about God supplying the Israelites that escaped from Egypt with manna. This was basically a flake that fell from the sky and tasted like honey wafers. You all know the story.
So earlier this afternoon, while cooking lunch for my family, I was pulling the pepperoni’s out to make pizza tacos (as Charlie calls them) and saw fresh food in piles and had the anxious thought of, “Ugh, we need to figure out when to eat this so it doesn’t go bad.” And it hit me. That story about the manna.
Don’t worry. I’ll start with a little backstory so you can get a bird’s eye view.
Exodus 16: 11-20 “Then the Lord said to Moses, “I have heard the Israelites complaints. Now tell them, ‘In the evening you will have meat to eat, and in the morning, you will have all the bread you want. Then you will know that I am the Lord your God.”
“That evening, vast numbers of quail flew in and covered the camp. And the next morning the area around the camp was wet with dew. When the dew evaporated, a flaky substance as fine as frost blanketed the ground. The Israelites were puzzled when they saw it. “What is it?” they asked each other. They had no idea what it was.”
(You still with me? Keep going, this gets good.)
“And Moses told them, “It is food the Lord has given you to eat. These are the Lord’s instructions: Each household should gather as much as it needs. Pick up two quarts for each person in your tent.”
“So, the people of Israel did as they were told. Some gathered a lot, some only a little. But when they measured it out, everyone had just enough. Those who gathered a lot had nothing left over, and those who gathered only a little had enough. Each family had just what it needed.”
(We’re almost there, I promise.)
“Then Moses told them, “Do not keep any of it until morning. But some of them didn’t listen and kept some of it until morning. But by then it was full of maggots and had a terrible smell. Moses was very angry with them.”
PHEW! Okay, now that you have the backstory and the stage is set, let’s dive into what the Spirit told me as I was pulling those dang pepperonis out of the fridge drawer and saw the mountain of ‘soon to be spoiled’ food.
He said “This is why I said to get just enough.” :O Wait, what did I hear? Was God being PRACTICAL with me? For years, I thought God only spoke in spiritual undertones and gave me the secrets of the universe.
But no, the Holy Spirit is a practical preacher.
I realized then that I was getting more than I needed. Stockpiling because of a fear I have clung to for longer than I remember.
Growing up, we didn’t have a lot. Food was there, but it wasn’t a lot and it wasn’t the GOOD stuff – you know what I mean. The good cheese, the fresh deli meat, the fruit.
So, as an adult when I saw my fridge, freezer and cabinets stocked FULL, I felt okay. It was like, I knew I was achieving a goal that felt unattainable as a child. My hope and peace were in the food.
Isn’t it funny how God comes full circle and gives you time to digest before he gives you another bite? (Figuratively and literally)
So, from here on out, I’m going to make my list of meals for the week and buy only what I need. Not because I am a do-gooder that makes all the lists and does all the right things. But because my hope and trust are in God and He tells me I have enough.