Parson to Person

Crave the manna

If God is all we need, why do we live as if God isn’t more than enough? We are entering a season of Thanksgiving and I often wonder if there are those, me included, who abuse the luxuries some of us have been blessed with. Right now, I am writing this in the warmth of Central Park Coffee, drinking a hot coffee and on my Mac Book. I will go home after work today to a warm home, my boys will attempt to tackle me and I will give my wife a kiss. We will have a hot meal for dinner. We will leave the lights in the home on until about 10 p.m. and go to bed on a soft mattress. I can take a hot shower, have all the toiletries need for proper hygiene. We may not have the best of anything, but we have everything we need. What do we need? What do you need?

Here is what I can confidently tell you I need. I need Jesus. For some, if the luxuries of this world were taken, if nice vehicles, beautiful homes, material things and financial wealth were removed, would Jesus be enough?

God used Moses to deliver the children of Israel from slavery and oppression from Egyptian rule. Let’s look at how the children of Israel responded to their newfound freedom in God.

Numbers 11:1-4:

“Now the people complained about their hardships in the hearing of the Lord, and when He heard them His anger was aroused. The fire from the Lord burned among them and consumed some of the outskirts of the camp. When the people cried out to Moses, he prayed to the Lord and the fire died down. So that place was called Taberah, because fire from the Lord burned among them. The rabble with them began to crave other food, and again the Israelites started wailing and said, ‘If only we had meat to eat! We remember the fish we at in Egypt at no cost-also the cucumbers, melons, leeks, onions and garlic. But now we have lost our appetite; we never see anything but this manna!’”

So, God literally provided bread from Heaven and everything they needed to sustain them and yet the continued to complain. This is the same God that performed miracle after miracle in which they witnessed His great power and they continued to complain. The God who split the sea so they could cross and yet they complained. Did they not remember what God did for them? Do we not remember what God has done for us?

I wonder if there are those who have stated, “IF ONLY WE HAD THIS” or “IF ONLY WE HAD THAT,” then I would be happy, or then I would follow God, or get this accomplished or that accomplished.

Are we too busy craving other “food” that we don’t see what God has already provided for us? Are we too busy craving what we don’t have versus being grateful to God for what He has provided for us already and done for us? We are all on different levels financially, but I believe there is a level of gratefulness that most of us reading this can demonstrate.

I think of Paul when he writes in Philippians 4:12-13. He says this. “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all things through Him Who gives me strength.”

It’s not about being rich or poor, it’s about God being all we need in ALL circumstances.

My good friend and Pastor of First Baptist Church, Steve English here in Mt. Pleasant said it best the other day when he told me this, “The foundation of thanksgiving is the expectation of nothing.” There is a lot we don’t deserve in this life, yet God in all of His goodness blesses us in so many ways? How has God blessed you? Do you see or recognize it? Is God more than enough? Crave the manna. God bless and have a great weekend and Thanksgiving season.