Friday, June 1, 2012

Manna

When the Israelites were camping for forty years in the desert after leaving Egypt, they experienced hunger, thirst, and the fear that comes from not believing God would take care of them. Well, after listening to their cries, God did provide food in the form of manna and everything else they needed. It always puzzled me that time after time they lost hope, forgot that God had just got them out of a bind, and complained that they were better off before they started their journey.  But God would come to their rescue and provide for them again and again, despite their whining.

I've been puzzled at their behavior, but then I realize I've done the same thing. Since I was hungry as a child when my dad became blind, I've tended to worry unnecessarily about finances. Sometimes I don't even realize that I'm worrying until I see that I've been collecting too much food and the cabinets are overflowing. I've laughed at myself many times because of my odd way of showing my lack of trusting God to provide for my needs.

An interesting thing has been happening lately that's been breaking my fears. A friend from church recently has started a ministry of receiving "spoiled" food from some stores and distributing it to those in need. There has been so much food, she asked others to help her distribute it. Hubby and I have been able to help her. I especially enjoy distributing food because I know what it's like to be hungry. There are so many people who have empty kitchens, despite living in such a prosperous country. We've found more and more people who need a little help in this difficult economic time. Hubby and I have given food to neighbors who are unemployed or struggling, a group home, an organization that has outreaches to disadvantaged, churches with soup kitchens, and many others. The more we look, the more we've found. Sometimes we come home with a van load of bread, meat, and produce. I don't know how we'd ever be able to pass all of it out, but in a few hours it is all in the hands of those who need it. Just like the Israelite's manna, we can't hoard the food, but pass it out to others, quickly and freely. The act of receiving the food and passing it out has been so healing for me. I think I've been blessed far more than those who get the food.

Another thing that excites me is that we sometimes give extra food to others so that they in turn can bless others they know. So those who have little are able to know the joy of giving and build their faith by giving to others. Being thankful and generous breaks the spirit of poverty.

A Food Box Given to a Woman With Health and Financial Difficulties

A Lot of Food Went Here Today



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