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. On the sixth day they are to prepare what they bring in, and that is to be twice as much as they gather on the other days." - Exodus 16:4-5 NIV
What will you do with the blessings you receive? In this passage we see God's faithfulness in providing a whining and complaining nation of Israel with food from heaven (manna) to sustain them in the wilderness. Isn't God good? If it were me doling out the blessing I might have told them to quit complaining for a day or two before I provided it to them. It is a good thing that I'm not in control!
However, I wonder why God chose to test their obedience with the manna. He didn't choose to test them with the water He provided back in Marah (Ex 15:22-26), yet they complained there as well. It was apparently evident to God that the hearts of the Israelites were not totally with Him. They had, after all, exclaimed their desire to be back in Egypt (Ex 16:3). So God put them to the test.
I think that many times we aren't much different than the Israelites. We oftentimes follow the same cycle. By God's mercy, after hearing our own cries for deliverance, He delivers us. Freed from our trials, we quickly forget what we were delivered from, start complaining and wishing for the old life we never even really liked to begin with. It is no wonder God has to repeatedly test the nature of our hearts for Him, even in our blessings. How will you treat the blessings God has recently given you? Will you do with them as He pleases?
Lord, hear our prayer and forgive us for consistently falling down in our walk with you. Give us the desire to do your will and not our own in our lives. Show us your ways and help us to be good stewards of the blessings you provide. Amen.
Janna Rust is a Life/Business Coach and Speaker dedicated to encouraging others towards lives God intends for them. For more information, visit her at www.purposefulpartnerships.com.