The Lord said to Joshua, “Today I have rolled away from you the disgrace of Egypt.” And so that place is called Gilgal to this day. While the Israelites were camped in Gilgal they kept the Passover in the evening on the fourteenth day of the month in the plains of Jericho. On the day after the Passover, on that very day, they ate the produce of the land, unleavened cakes, and parched grain. The manna ceased on the day they ate the produce of the land, and the Israelites no longer had manna; they ate the crops of the land of Canaan that year. [NRSV]
When dependable isn’t
As much as the people complained about Manna being boring God provides every day what we need for each day. “Give us this day our daily bread” is an affirmation of this story from the Hebrews generations in the wilderness. It is the story of one generation passing to the next a dependance upon God in our everyday lives.
As we look around we see a world where God is not sought daily by the majority of folks. So much hope is placed in government, the wealthy class, the social community and so little does our society turn to God.
The hard lesson of the journey in the wilderness was that it is not singularly the responsibility of the next generation to trust God, but for the previous generation is to model and teach trust in God.
Manna: God did all the work
The amazing nature of manna was that it was provided as daily bread. God providing exactly what was needed for a given day, one day at a time. When they tried to take more than they needed for one day the ‘extra’ molded and spoiled.
The lesson was about faithfulness in the small stuff, the ordinary life, the basic, so that we are not slaves to foreign gods in foreign lands, with goals that are foriegn to Gods.
So often we ask for more than we need today. We set God up to ‘fix’ our lives our problems our crisis, and the real gift is finding God in every moment. The powerful witness of the creation story is that God of the big picture paints with individual brush strokes in our lives.
God has something better
As gracious and dependable is daily bread, is the day-in-day-out work in the promised land. The free lunch stopped the very day they were delivered into the land of blessing.
When we are blessed, what follows is what we do with each blessing. What follows is our responsibility to work with all God has entrusted to us.
Our Part of God’s Work
The witness of this day in Jousha 5 is the place that we take what God entrusts to us to both live off the land and take responsibility to use the promise to provide for others.