So in the evening the quails came up and covered the camp, and in the morning there was a blanket of dew around the camp. When the layer of dew evaporated, on the surface of the wilderness there was a fine, flake-like thing, 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. And Moses said to them, “This is the bread which the Lord has given you to eat.”
It had been not yet two months since God delivered his people from the hand of Egypt. After this short time in the wilderness, relatively short compared to the decades they would spend wandering the desert, they began to miss the comforts of captivity. Specifically, they longed for good food, for meat and bread. In response to this, God provided meat in the evening in the form of quails and bread in the morning in the form of manna. A flaky, pastry-like thing that tasted as if it were sweetened with honey, God would provide this manna for forty years. In a minor way, the Israelites had to work for this food in that they were required to gather what they needed daily. Other than gathering the manna and preparing the meat, God laid his provision at their feet. Yet, even after decades of provision and ultimate deliverance from the Wilderness of Sin, the grumbling continued.
When it comes to provision, we humans often seem to take issue with God’s methods. I wonder whether anyone has ever asked God to provide in some way without first developing their own idea of how that provision might appear. Perhaps it comes down to us simply wanting all of the answers and shying away from the unknown. Perhaps it is rooted in our desire to have things the way we like instead of the way we need. In this instance, God’s provision was perfect. His people ate the same thing daily for four decades, but they had no lack. He knew what they needed, and that is what He provided. It may not have looked exactly how they expected, and they may have grown tired of the monotony, but the truth is that their heavenly Father kept them throughout this time. Oh, the many impoverished people in the world today who would rejoice at meat in the evening and daily manna from heaven in the morning!
Let us never grow so accustomed to the miracles of God that they cease to create wonder in our hearts. Let us always appreciate his miraculous provision even when it is something other than what we would design ourselves. Let us always trust that God will intervene when our needs have yet to be met. God’s ability of miraculous provision is not merely historical in nature. He is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. Just as He provided for the Israelites for decades in a manner that was clearly of his hand, He can provide for us today and tomorrow in a way that is inarguably an act of God. I hope that we not only welcome but seek this miraculous provision and remain excited to give him the glory for it. Father, thank You for providing for us perfectly even when it does not appear as we would expect, and teach us to be grateful for the manner in which You keep us.