God Gives and Enables, So We Can Practice Faith

“Bear in mind that the Lord has given you the Sabbath, that is why on the sixth day, he gives you bread for two days. Everyone is to stay where they are on the seventh day; no one is to go out. So the people rested on the seventh day.” –Exodus 16:29-30

When I read Exodus 16 this morning, my attention was drawn to some truths about our God. In case you’re not familiar with the passage, though, I’ll quickly summarize:

God Provided for His GiftGod has just set the Israelites free from Egypt and led them safely across the Red Sea and into the desert. They are hungry. And they are complaining about it. Rather melodramatically, in fact. They wish they were back in Egypt. They wish they were dead. And I kind of wonder if Moses doesn’t wish they were back in Egypt or dead, too. Just what has God gotten him into?

God doesn’t waste any time diffusing the situation. He tells the people that He will provide. He will be sending manna in the morning and quail at night, and when the people receive it, they will know He is their God.

God gives specific instructions about the manna, though. The people are only to gather what they need for one day, trusting God to provide for the next. Some of the people gather more and try to hoard it, though. That ends in a stinky mess. On the sixth day, however, God tells the people to gather enough for two days, so they can rest on the Sabbath. Those who obey discover that the manna doesn’t go bad overnight when stored for the Sabbath. (And those who don’t obey go hungry on the seventh day.)

So here are the truths that caught my attention this morning:

1. When God gives His people commands, He also gives them the means to keep them. He told His people to rest on the seventh day. He knew they would be hungry, though, so He kept the manna from going bad. He made it possible for them to rest by meeting this basic need.

2. When God gives His people good gifts, He also gives them all they need to enjoy them. Imagine giving dinner in a nice restaurant and tickets to a musical as an anniversary gift for a couple with young children. To be sure they could enjoy the gift, you would also offer to watch their children that night and, if necessary, pay for parking in the theatre lot. The gift would be no good if the couple couldn’t leave their children or afford extra expenses that went along with it.

Likewise, Sabbath rest was a gift from God to His people. He wanted them to enjoy it, so He provided all they needed, so that they could. In covering all the details, God gave the Israelites no excuse to disobey Him. He showed that He is not unreasonable. He is aware of all that His children need. He is able to provide. The Israelites learned to trust Him (at least for a time). They rested on the Sabbath day.

Father, thank You for Your provision, Your generous gifts, and Your attention to all of the details surrounding these. You’ve given us every reason to trust You with our lives. Help us to follow You in faith. We love You, Lord. Amen.

  • How has God revealed Himself to you as the God Who provides what you need?
  • What is God asking You to trust Him with right now?
  • What can you do about it to exercise Your faith?


Congratulations to Marina B., winner of the Parachute Prayer book giveaway! Thank you to everyone who participated.


Janet Benlien Reeves

Reader, Writer, Runner, Flower Hunter, Child of God, Prince Charming's Wife, Mom Prone to Cheer

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  1. Beautiful reminder! Thank you so much. I’ve been thinking a lot about rest lately as I find myself stuck at home, snowed in, and church has been cancelled. God has provided everything my family needs. We do not find ourselves without. Thanks for reminding me that the Sabbath is a day for rest, reflection, & worship of our amazing God.
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  2. This is wonderful insight. You mentioned that after God had let them out of Egypt, they wished they were back. How true is in our generation as well. Whenever God gets us out of a situation, we are often quick to run back to it! Years ago when I used to smoke, I would stop for weeks at a time, and go right back to it. Part of true deliverance is relying on God so that we do not go back where we came from. Fully trusting God means that we have to deny our flesh and our emotions and stand alone on what His word says. A couple of weeks ago, my five year old son was admitted to Nationwide Children’s Hospital with a very rare illness. The Doctors were telling us that he would have permanent heart damage, my husband and I both refused to entertain that thought. We had such peace in such a stressful, difficult time. We serve such a faithful God, my son has no heart damage, and only has to see his cardiologist once or twice a year. Sorry for leaving a long comment!!!
    Mandy 🙂