Week 6 (15-21 Oct.) – Provisions of Life
Sunday – Basic Needs & Wants
Scripture Reading: Proverbs 3:1-10
As we see in this section of Proverbs, if we live life in God’s creation according to the word of God then God will provide us with “abundant welfare” and “then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine.” God promises to provide us all our needs when we live life in God’s creation. Adam was able to eat the fruit of any tree in the garden. In the wilderness, even though it would take much toil, God would provide for our needs.
Pastor’s Pondering: What are the things that Solomon says we are to do for God to provide us with provision in life?
Monday – Wilderness – Strive to have
Scripture Reading: Exodus 16:1-3
When Israel enters the wilderness after leaving Egypt, they begin to grumble and complain to Moses because they are used to stressing about where the food will come from for them to eat. In the wilderness, we have to work to find, to prepare, and to eat our daily food. The Israelites complain because they had no idea where they would get their daily need of food. Without God, we must figure it out ourselves. We also see in other parts of Exodus, that they complain about finding the water they need. Without God, we are left to find our daily provisions not recognizing from where it really comes.
Pastor’s Pondering: What is it like to have to stress over meeting our daily needs in the wilderness?
Tuesday – Creation/Kingdom God provides
Scripture Reading: Exodus 16:4-21
Just as from the very beginning in the garden, God promises to provide that which we need to survive in life. In this story, God provides quails and Manna for them to eat for each day – no more and no less. God does this to remind them to daily turn to Him and believe. Life in God’s creation is recognizing that God provides for us daily and that all we have is from God as a part of God’s creation. Life in God’s creation means that as we live our lives following God we can trust that God will provide all that we need to eat and drink to survive.
Pastor’s Pondering: How does our life today lead us away from seeing God’s provision in life?
Wednesday – Focus on Life in Christ (Bread of Life)
Scripture Reading: John 6:22-40
When Jesus talks about being the bread of life, he is not meaning that literally we must eat his body as those listening to him think. We know the rest of the story and that this can be reference to eating the bread at our Lord’s Table. But, it means that as we work at the Spirit changing us into the people that have eternal life in Christ, we will be provided for by our Lord and Savior. We just need to believe in God, our Father, In Christ, His Son and the Holy Spirit, the three-in-one.
Pastor’s Pondering: What is to be our focus in our Life in God’s Creation to receive provision in this life?
Thursday – Eat/Drink/Wear – Stress of life
Scripture Reading: Matthew 6:25-30
This scripture from Jesus beautifully addresses the difference in life in the wilderness and life in God’s creation. In the wilderness, people stress over what they will eat, drink and wear. In God’s creation, people focus on their life in the Kingdom and all these things are given to them. Christ focus and no stress. Unfortunately, when we live life in God’s creation we are tempted to revert to life in the wilderness and instead of trusting in God and focusing on the things of the kingdom, we begin to stress on what we will eat, drink and wear.
Pastor’s Pondering: Lord, help us to focus and not stress!
Friday – Danger of Wants/Rich Man
Scripture Reading: Matthew 10:17-31
The danger of being bountifully blessed in our provisions in life is we forget where they came from and find that they become more important in our life than God. The Rich man was able to follow the commandments but the idea of giving up all he had and relying upon God for what he would need was too much for him. When our wants become more important than what God wants for us then we end up living life in the wilderness – and eventually lose what is really important in life.
Pastor’s Pondering: How can we ensure that our needs and wants don’t become more important than our walk with Christ?
Saturday – Fasting/Testing of Needs
Scripture Reading: Luke 4:1-13
In Luke’s telling of Christ in the wilderness and being tempted by Satan, we find that Jesus is complete fasting – “eating nothing at all.” It is after the forty days that Satan comes to tempt Jesus to take matters into his own hands instead of waiting for God to provide in God’s way. Jesus could have provided for himself in this case, but the purpose of this time was to wait on God and oftentimes we are tempted to not wait on God but to take matters in our own hands especially when it comes to our daily provisions.
Pastor’s Pondering: If we are fasting or if we are being tested to wait on God, may we fulfill God’s purpose for us!