How often do we become so accustomed to hearing the Lord’s Prayer that we forget to apply it to our daily lives? One of our pastors’ wives has written a four-part blog on “Give Us This Day” that I believe will be a blessing to you.
I remember being very intrigued when my aunt arrived back to the states from 6 months in Sweden.
She brought back several dozen string shopping bags. She explained that food shopping was a daily event in the town where she was staying and that these string bags were the mode of gathering and transporting the groceries back home. At first glance they did not look very sturdy or very big, in fact they looked rather fragile and skimpy. But she revealed how they stretched as you filled them and that the “string” they were made of was very strong in itself, but it was the weaving of the string that gave it the added strength.
I used the several bags that she had given me for various uses, but never really had the occasion to use them for their intended purpose of gathering groceries daily from the market. But the idea has continued to intrigue me.
It has brought me to pondering more deeply the sense of asking God to provide for us daily.
“Give us this day…our daily bread.” It is recited in churches, finds its way printed on kitchen towels, painted on wooden plaques, but is it real in our minds and hearts?
Does God provide for us daily or in waves of time? I am coming to believe that he provides for us daily, not just our daily bread as we gather together each meal of the day, but in many more ways than we might initially think.
When the Israelites were wandering the desert and God provided manna each morning and evening and gave instruction on how to gather and eat of it, they had to be mindful and maybe even a bit intrigued themselves through this process of “daily bread.”
As I venture through the grocery store, a farmer’s market, or even a large-scale buying club, I am trying to regain the sense of intrigue at how God orchestrates “my daily bread.”
A few years back, we lost electric for 4 days and just as the final slivers of ice were melting away, our electric returned. We had eaten through most of the food that we could and the rest had to be tossed. Thus, began the rebuilding of the perishable food. It was like starting over and each item I replaced was a reminder that “our daily bread” is perishable and God is the one that provides and replaces. While I have never had to gather daily “manna” from the ground, I have faced an empty refrigerator and freezer and started over.
Since then our refrigerator or freezer has not been empty like that, but God continues to remind me that he will provide for me daily what I need. That is something to ponder over and be intrigued by.
Those of us in ministry have many opportunities to think upon this. It looks like we are dependent on church budgets, finance committees and the whims of the people who hold the checkbook. But God has promised to provide for us daily and that He is bigger and better and more reliable than any manmade plan that exists. He uses those methods through the hands of people, but we are ultimately dependent on God. Next time you are at the grocery store filling your cart, gathering produce from a farmers market stand, putting the ingredients of a recipe together or wondering how this year’s church budget is going to provide for your needs, think of how God has orchestrated your “daily bread” and give thanks with a grateful and intrigued heart. God has woven a string bag for each of us to carry what we need for this day.
I pray this will be a daily reminder for all of us, that God provides for us daily and we can depend on Him for every need! Stay tuned for part 2 next week.