“Then said the Lord unto Moses, Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you…. And the house of Israel called the name thereof manna: and it was like coriander seed, white; and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey.” (Exodus 16:4a, 31)
Every evening at dusk, Granny Ludlow fills her bird feeders with bird seed. In the morning, the birds are probably amazed to see that there is more seed for them to eat. Granny wonders what the birds would be saying if they could speak. Maybe they would be asking, “Where did this fresh food come from? It was almost gone yesterday when we went back to our nests. Does the seed grow overnight?” Granny can imagine them feeling a little confused. Perhaps they are chirping to one another in their own bird language: “Having enough to eat every morning is a mystery we don’t understand – but we sure are happy when we see the food again!” It doesn’t really matter what the birds think, though. Granny gives them food every day because she cares about them and enjoys providing for them.
When Moses was leading the Israelites through the wilderness to the Promised Land, the people were hungry and needed food for their health and strength. Moses couldn’t just go to the grocery store and buy food for thousands and thousands of people. He depended upon God to supply what they needed. At first, the Israelites were not very happy with Moses. They told him, “Ye have brought us forth into this wilderness, to kill this whole assembly with hunger.” (See Exodus 16:1-8.)
God heard his people’s complaints, and He knew their needs. He told Moses that He would “rain bread” from heaven. The people called it “manna.” God gave clear instructions about how much manna they should keep and eat each day, but some did not obey Him. They did not believe Him that there would be enough food for them the next day. So some of the people gathered more than they needed for one day and planned to keep it overnight to save it for the next day – just in case God did not provide for them the next day, they thought. But those people who thought they could outsmart God were sorry for it. The manna they kept overnight got wormy and spoiled. It had to be thrown away, anyway. Instead, they should have trusted that God, Who provided for them today, would also provide for them tomorrow.
God was the Provider, and He decided what He would provide. God gave them plenty of manna each day, to be gathered during the morning. After the sun rose higher, the manna for that day would melt away. In the evenings, God gave the people meat to eat. He wanted the Israelites to know they needed to depend on Him instead of trusting in their own wisdom or in their own abilities. Human beings are not God, and God wants us to know Who He is and what He can and will do for us – for His glory, and for our good. He says, “Ye shall know that I am Lord your God.” (Exodus 16:12b) God wants us to trust Him and to believe that He will provide all that is needed in our lives. Today, thank God for all He is and all He does for us daily. Isn’t He deserving of our trust?
God’s character and works have proven trustworthy over and over again.
» Do I believe that the God Who provided what I needed yesterday can and and will provide what I need for tomorrow, too?
» Do I have a spirit of gratitude for all that God has given me?
» Am I trusting God daily to take care of me?