I’m reading through the Bible in 2016. It’s something I’ve done before, and hope to do many more times. I’m going cover to cover. Genesis seems to reel me in, just enough to get me through the next few books.
This time, as I journeyed through Sinai with the recently freed Israelites on their trek toward the Promised Land, I was struck by something. The familiar story pattern emergedThe people complained about not having any food, and told Moses they wished he would have let them remain slaves in Egypt.
“In the desert the whole community grumbled against Moses and Aaron. The Israelites said to them, “If only we had died by the Lord’s hand in Egypt! There we sat around pots of meat and ate all the food we wanted, but you have brought us out into this desert to starve this entire assembly to death.” Ex. 16:2-3
Exodus 16:31 says, “The people of Israel called the bread manna. It was white like coriander seed and tasted like wafers made with honey.”
Imagine with me what it was like to let that perfect food, made by God Himself, melt in your mouth every morning. It nourished the people. Can you imagine gathering some for your children? Feeding it to them? I think I would find great peace in the knowing that it was exactly what I needed.
God gave manna, raining down sustaining food from the heavens. But this time I honed in on the timing of it all.
It was morning.
God turned the dew to honey-like bread in the morning. The children of Israel were instructed to gather it in the morning, enough for each day. If they gathered too much, it would spoil. But they had to gather it in the morning. If they waited too long, the manna would melt away, leaving nothing until God mercifully poured it out again at the dawn of the next day. He also provided quail at twilight. But that sure is a long time to wait for a bite to eat if you missed out on the manna!
I compare this gathering of manna to my own gathering of spiritual food from God. Usually, if I don’t gather it early, it won’t ever get done that day. This leaves me hungry all day. And that’s no way to live.
Are you living spiritually hungry?
Are you gathering your manna?
What time of day do you do it?
Do you find that life goes better when you rise early and seek the food your soul hungers for?
I’m learning to make gathering my “manna” a routine like breakfast, or that first cup of coffee.
I’ll be praying for you first thing tomorrow morning. I will ask God that your gathering time is productive, nourishing, and sustaining, but most of all, that it’s a daily ritual.
Writing in answer to His call, Hosanna Barton