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Exodus 16:1-21, Bread from Heaven

Narrative Lectionary Key Verse for Today

The Israelites said to them, “If only we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt
— Exodus 16:3

NL Daily Devotion for Wednesday, October 3, 2018

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by Rev. Stefanie Fauth, Clergy Stuff


For awhile I was HOOKED on “How I Met Your Mother.” I thought it was funny and clever - and they made up names for familiar concepts.

One of the best I heard was, “Graduation Goggles.” It’s that feeling you get when you’re almost done with something, so you can only see it in a positive light.

Maybe you spent your entire high school career HATING everything about school - hating your teachers, your classmates, the way it smelled in the hallway - but when it’s time to graduate, you get sentimental. Suddenly you can’t believe you have to say goodbye, and you wish you had more time in this place you actually probably still hate.

The Israelites do this same thing when they are wandering in the desert. “Maybe we were slaves and tortured and our children killed by Pharoah in Egypt, but OH the food! We were fed so well, and now God is going to make us starve! It’d be better if we were dead!”

We get dramatic when we are hungry, it makes sense.

But it’s also interesting how instead of trusting that God is there, on your side to make a bright future, we just complain or get worried.

Trying new things is scary - and sometimes it’s hard - but focusing on what’s past is the worst thing we can do for our own growth!


Narrative Lectionary Daily Reading:

Exodus 16:1-21

The whole congregation of the Israelites set out from Elim; and Israel came to the wilderness of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after they had departed from the land of Egypt. The whole congregation of the Israelites complained against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness. The Israelites said to them, “If only we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the fleshpots and ate our fill of bread; for you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.” Then the Lordsaid to Moses, “I am going to rain bread from heaven for you, and each day the people shall go out and gather enough for that day. In that way I will test them, whether they will follow my instruction or not. On the sixth day, when they prepare what they bring in, it will be twice as much as they gather on other days.” So Moses and Aaron said to all the Israelites, “In the evening you shall know that it was the Lord who brought you out of the land of Egypt, and in the morning you shall see the glory of the Lord, because he has heard your complaining against the Lord. For what are we, that you complain against us?” And Moses said, “When the Lordgives you meat to eat in the evening and your fill of bread in the morning, because the Lord has heard the complaining that you utter against him—what are we? Your complaining is not against us but” against the Lord.Then Moses said to Aaron, “Say to the whole congregation of the Israelites, ‘Draw near to the Lord, for he has heard your complaining.’“And as Aaron spoke to the whole congregation of the Israelites, they looked toward the wilderness, and the glory of the Lord appeared in the cloud. The Lord spoke to Moses and said, “I have heard the complaining of the Israelites; say to them, ‘At twilight you shall eat meat, and in the morning you shall have your fill of bread; then you shall know that I am the Lord your God.’“

In the evening quails came up and covered the camp; and in the morning there was a layer of dew around the camp. When the layer of dew lifted, there on the surface of the wilderness was a fine flaky substance, as fine as frost on the ground. When the Israelites saw it, they said to one another, “What is it?” For they did not know what it was. Moses said to them, “It is the bread that the Lord has given you to eat. This is what the Lord has commanded: ‘Gather as much of it as each of you needs, an omer to a person according to the number of persons, all providing for those in their own tents.’“ The Israelites did so, some gathering more, some less. But when they measured it with an omer, those who gathered much had nothing over, and those who gathered little had no shortage; they gathered as much as each of them needed. And Moses said to them, “Let no one leave any of it over until morning.” But they did not listen to Moses; some left part of it until morning, and it bred worms and became foul. And Moses was angry with them. Morning by morning they gathered it, as much as each needed; but when the sun grew hot, it melted.

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Earlier Event: October 2
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Later Event: October 4
Exodus 17:1-7, Water from the Rock