Last week I led the study for our youth group. It was on the chapter in Exodus when God first introduces Manna to the Israelites.
i am familiar w/ this story, I understand it is about God's provision.
What I wanted to focus on & what I got out of it, reading it this time was something new.
When the Israelites received the manna, the first thing they said was: What is it? That is actually, literally what the word manna means: What is it. It was something they had never seen before.
I am sure the Israelites had an idea of HOW they wanted God to provide for them. I believe they had a familiar idea. What God provided was not familiar though.
It was new & strange & His provision had some 'strings' attached, you might say. It was only there in the morning, by noon it melted away. If they tried to take care of themselves, by gathering more than was needed for the day, the manna rotted & became filled w/ maggots. Lovely.
I think the disciples also had a preconceived idea of how Jesus was going to 'save' them. And although they physically walked w/ Jesus & he warned them, I still think they were surprised how everything went down in the end. Their God, Jesus was DEAD! Not in a coma, not sleeping, but D.E.A.D dead!
Yet, Christ's death was God's perfect provision for us. He knew that it was the only provision that would really work & provide the perfect atonement & sacrifice for our sins, the only way for us to spend eternity w/ Him.
Now, in our lives, we often go to God w/ our needs & I'm sure we have an idea in our head of how that need should get met. Are we willing to accept the way God meets our need? Especially if it looks so different from what we have in mind? If it is so UNfamiliar? Do we trust God that He will meet our needs, provide for us, in the BEST way possible?
That was the challenge. God promises to provide for us....but it may not look like any 'provision' we've ever imagined....but it will be the BEST!