I’m a planner. I love lists that I can check off. I love seeing an event come together after considering all the details that must be addressed. There are always questions in the planning, though: Will there be enough food for everyone? Are there enough drink options? Do we have enough seats to accommodate everyone? Have I scheduled enough time for this activity? And the list goes on. Do you notice a common theme in all those questions? “Enough”. I’m always concerned with the “enough”! So much so, that I will often secure more than enough just in case. In my planner mindset, having more than enough is just extra insurance that things will go well.
This is why I can identify so easily with the Israelites in Exodus 16. At this point, they were well into their second month of traveling in the wilderness after God had rescued them from bondage in Egypt. Despite this miraculous deliverance, the people were grumbling and complaining (Sadly, I can identify with this as well!) against Moses and Aaron, even to the point of wishing they had died in Egypt! The people were “hangry”, short on memory in regard to what the Lord had already done for them, and prone to self-centeredness.
God’s gracious response to their grumblings against Him was faithful provision with a side portion of obedience testing. Exodus 16:4 – “Then the Lord said to Moses, ‘I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day. In this way I will test them and see whether they will follow my instructions.’ “ Of course, some of the Israelites didn’t follow instructions…they gathered more bread (manna) than they needed, or they kept it overnight, contrary to Moses’ instructions from the Lord, and it was spoiled and full of worms the next morning. In their disobedient attempt to secure “more than enough”, they demonstrated their lack of trust in and dependence on a consistently trustworthy and dependable God.
For me, there is unspeakable comfort in the words “enough for that day”. As I sit with the Lord each morning and reflect on the day ahead, I have learned to ask Him for enough for that day…..enough grace, enough trust, enough wisdom, enough direction from the Holy Spirit to navigate whatever may happen. This practice didn’t happen overnight! There were many years of me running ahead of the Lord in my own strength, in my own timing, trying to feel secure in my own planning and preparation. And we all know how things turn out when we try to work in our own strength……it’s exhausting and frustrating, and God doesn’t receive the glory only He deserves! Lysa TerKeurst puts it this way, “The more dependent we become on God’s strength, the less enamored we will be with other choices.”
I’m still a planner, but I have a different perspective about planning now. “The mind of a man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps” (Proverbs 16:9). “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own” (Matthew 6:34). Like the Israelites in the wilderness, we must depend on God each day for what we need that very day. And like the Israelites, we discover that God is faithful if we trust Him. “ Enough for that day” translates into a beautiful pattern of days strung together in a life that loves, trusts, and serves Him. HE IS ENOUGH!
Blog by First Baptist Powell member, Janice Ramsey