Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Egypt’


Manna, bread from Heaven, God’s way of feeding His people when they came out of Egypt into the wilderness. When you think about it, manna was just an odd phenomenon from the beginning.

Out in the desert, the people complained that they had no food to eat. In their minds back in Egypt they had pots full of meat and ate all the bread they wanted. They conveniently forgot they were slaves to the Egyptians, and that God had heard their moaning against the Egyptians and came in to set them free.

 

Saj - Arabic flat bread

Bread feeds the body while the Word of the Lord feeds the spirit.

 

Amazing freedom

 

Set them free He did, with spectacular miracles and the saving of their firstborn sons from the Angel of Death, and not only the sons of His people but the sons of all that believed in Him and observed the Passover instructions. Really amazing when you think about it.

Yet, not much later, they were groaning and crying out, complaining that they had been brought out to the desert to die, and not to the freedom that God had for them. What was all the complaining about? Essentially it was because they had to believe God to take care of them while they made their way through the desert to the Promised Land. The caveat was they didn’t have the luxuries of Egyptian life – if you call a life of slavery accompanied by pots of meat and daily bread luxurious.

Food for His people

And what did God do? Did He blast them for their unbelief and lack of gratitude? No, He knew His people and said, “I have heard the complaints of the Israelites.” Exodus 16:11a then provided them with bread in the form of manna in the morning and meat in the form of quail in the evening. He fed them.

This was no easy feat, by some estimates over 2 million people came out of Egypt during the Exodus. Two million people scouring the desert for something to eat, 2 million people being fed by white flakes that appeared in the morning and disappeared as the sun rose.

Exactly the amount we need

But, manna wasn’t just handed to the people, they had to go out and gather it. Every morning they went out, except the sixth day when they gathered enough for two days because they needed to observe what would become the Sabbath. And everyone gathered exactly the amount they needed, not a scrap more, not a scrap less. When it was weighed no matter what they thought they gathered, they found it was just the exact amount they needed to eat for that day.

Just the exact amount of food for that day, each according to his appetite and age. And, isn’t that what God does with us and our spiritual food? When we take the time every day to be fed by His Word, we get exactly what we need, not too much and not too little, each according to what we need, but if we don’t take that time, we starve.

“At twilight you will eat meat, and in the morning you will eat bread until you are full. Then you will know that I am the LORD your God.” Exodus 16:11b

 

Advertisements

Read Full Post »


“When you’ve lost it all, that’s when you finally realize that life is beautiful” is a quote from someone you might not think you’d see mentioned in this kind of blog. It’s from Nikki Sixx, otherwise known as the mastermind behind Motley Crue.

It’s an amazing thing to me that so many times when we look at the stories of people’s lives, there is that point where they lost everything. They were completely stripped raw and bare, yet they didn’t let that kill them, they somehow managed to still see the beauty in what was around them. Then there are those who allow those times to kill them, and their lives from that point on are tainted with the stain of what happened to them.

Whenever I think about someone who held on to the tatters of his life, to the ragged strips of his dream, I think of Joseph. His story, his life story, continually amazes me no matter how many times I read it.

He was a dreamer no doubt about it, and possibly an arrogant one at that. Yet, his dreams came to him. He did not sit around and think about how he would like to gain power and prominence in a position that would allow him to be the giver of life for his family.

No, he went to bed, went to sleep and his dreams came to him. And it wasn’t just one dream about the sheaves of grain with his standing taller than the rest. He had a second dream in which the sun, the moon and the stars bowed down to him.

At this point most of us would think, out of our very modern perspective, that the dreams came out of his subconscious and were manifestations of his own ego.

Sounds like a good argument, except he seemed to believe that they would somehow come true, that they actually meant something and so did his brothers.

Usually when you encounter someone who’s willing to step out and say something like, ‘I dreamt this or that’ it’s because they’ve had experiences with their dreams that have led them to know, not just believe but know, that some of their dreams have credence beyond what’s going on in their subconscious.

They’ve seen aspects of their dreams come true, they’ve been able to work out issues in their dreams that overflow into the waking world with success, in short, they’ve learned that sometimes a dream isn’t a dream.

Without this background, no one in their right mind is going to step out, wave their hands in the air and proclaim that they’re a freaky dreamer. Because back then, just like now, when you step out like that, a whole lot of people are going to think you’re a couple sandwiches short of a picnic.

But Joseph knew, and his brothers knew too, that the dreams meant something more than just your average every night dream. So, he was willing to step out and tell them what he dreamt about. Foolhardy? Yes. Arrogant? Yes. Crazy? No.

So what did his brothers do to make sure that his dreams wouldn’t come true? They threw him in a pit, casually ate lunch nearby (you can only imagine his pleading cries) and sold him into slavery to a group of traders who were going into Egypt. When you look at the culture of the time, they sold him into an all but certain death.

And essentially that’s what happened to Joseph, he died. Forget the dreams, forget the fact that he was a favored son, forget everything. He was stripped of all he had ever known or had, and to make matters worse, he didn’t even own himself anymore.

Yet, this is where his life gets really interesting. He still holds on to the dreams. He still holds on to what he knew. Even though he had absolutely nothing, he still held on to what he knew was beautiful, his God. And he knew his God so well that He knew His God would follow through on the dreams that He gave him and make them a reality.

There are times, for some of us, in which God either takes away everything we have or allows it all to be taken away. Either way, it’s how we respond that matters. If we have nothing would we still say, ‘Blessed be the name of the LORD, life is beautiful’?

“Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised.”

Job 1:21 NIV

Read Full Post »