“Daily Bread!”(Ex.16:2-8 & 11-18 & 31-35).
“In the desert the whole community grumbled against Moses and Aaron…‘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…'”
“Then the LORD said to Moses, ‘I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day. In this way I will test them and see whether they will follow my instructions…'”
So Moses and Aaron said to all the Israelites, ‘In the evening you will know that it was the LORD who brought you out of Egypt, and in the morning you will see the glory of the LORD, because he has heard your grumbling against him…Who are we? You are not grumbling against us, but against the LORD.'”
And this is how bread came from heaven for the Israelites in their desert wanderings. They “ate manna for forty years, until they came to a land that was settled…”
I had just been appointed Acting Presbyterial Secretary(PS) for the then East Mungo North presbytery. I was to be Acting for one year, while remaining pastor of Nsimeyong. That was in my sixth year of ministry. Few months later something happened, which caused the authorities to withdraw the office. I was told that I wasn’t at fault, so I stood my ground that I should be allowed the one year.
I complained and my superiors understood.
I learned so much since then – especially about being an administrator. The then Synod Clerk dispatched the then Education Secretary to discuss with me and explain matters. He didn’t go to a hotel. He slept in a poorly arranged guest room in the rented manse. May his soul rest in peace. After his visit the Synod Clerk spoke with me on phone for about forty minutes trying to explain the better option before me. He ended up by asking me, “George, after being PS what next with only a Diploma in theology?” I saw his better option and today I have no regrets. May your soul rest in peace Very Rt Reverend.
In our phone conversation I told him that I had the right to be angry. He said he understood me well. When a few weeks later he preached a sermon in Yaounde titled, “The right to be angry,” I knew where he was coming from.
The story does not put me in a good light, but it is history because that’s how it happened. I’m fallible.
When we are angry about something we have the right to complain. Complain is “the expression of dissatisfaction or annoyance about something.” But you take it too far when you grumble; because grumbling is “the action or fact of complaining in a bad-tempered way.”
The exodus people were noted grumblers. For every little setback in their wanderings, they grumbled.
In today’s text, because of food, they grumbled against the LORD – even though they thought they were grumbling against Moses and Aaron. They were nostalgic for the fleshpots of Egypt. They prefered food in slavery than freedom that had the prize of some days with little or nothing to eat.
How they underestimated the LORD who crossed them over the Sea of Reeds while drowning their enemies in the same sea!
How we can easily forget the mighty wonders of the LORD when we are faced with an insignificant obstacle!
The LORD who provides is always there are will always provide – if only we remain steadfast in him and obey him.
The Lord Jesus Christ says when we pray, we should say, “…Give us this day our daily bread…” These words may not fit our present generation, since we are so focused on more than yearly bread. But Jesus is simply taking us back to when manna rained from heaven. They were instructed: “…go out each day and gather enough for that day… Each one is to gather as much as he needs…No one is to keep any of it until morning.”
This did not stop some recalcitrant greedy fellows from keeping some until morning, “but it was full of maggots and started smelling.”
In reality, what has been the value of the excesses that we gather for more than each day?
Dear friend, on some days things may not seem right with us. At such moments we may wonder whether God is still with us. When we get to that point we have a right to complain to God. We do not have to grumble.
The Lord Jesus Christ is the true spiritual bread that has rained down from heaven. He is enough for us each day. He says we should be concerned about today and leave tomorrow with its own “wahala.” He is the same today, just as he was yesterday in the same way he will be tomorrow!
Ask him to feed you enough for today.
Prayer of the day and week: Lord Jesus Christ, Bread of life, feed me enough for today. Amen!
Welcome back to a new working day and week! Have a blessed day and week! Peace be with you!
Rev Babila Fochang.
“Arm Yourself With The Same Attitude Of Suffering In The Body…!”(I Pt.4:1-6).The emphasis of “Joy to the world…” at Christmas more often than not multiply