Day by Day
All through Scripture, there is a pattern of the Lord taking a little and making it do a lot. He does it with people, like when young David faced the giant warrior Goliath. He does it with resources, like when a small jar of oil never runs out.
The worldview is often to hoard it and build bigger barns, but this is not how the Lord does things. You will be disappointed if your security is in things, for He will separate you from them. Hear the words of the Lord Jesus:
(Luke 12:16–21 NKJV) Then He spoke a parable to them, saying: "The ground of a certain rich man yielded plentifully. And he thought within himself, saying, 'What shall I do, since I have no room to store my crops?' So he said, 'I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build greater, and there I will store all my crops and my goods. And I will say to my soul, "Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry." ' But God said to him, 'Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?' "So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God."
You have no control over tomorrow, so don't put your hope and trust in what you have gathered. The Lord is a sustaining God and provides what we need as we need them. We may not have all of our immediate wants, as that can be a pretty elusive list, can't it? Though He promises that if we delight ourselves in the Lord, He will give us the desire of our hearts (Psalm 37:4). Jesus continues:
(Luke 12:22–24 NKJV) Then He said to His disciples, "Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; nor about the body, what you will put on. Life is more than food, and the body is more than clothing. Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap, which have neither storehouse nor barn; and God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds?
Let's consider those ravens He spoke of a moment. How does God provide for birds? Day by day. They have no storehouse or barn, yet, they always have enough to sustain them. All creation works that way, including the flowers in the field. The Lord is a sustaining God. Isn't that what Jesus taught His disciples?
(Luke 11:1–3 NKJV) Now it came to pass, as He was praying in a certain place, when He ceased, that one of His disciples said to Him, "Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples." So He said to them, "When you pray, say: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven. Give us day by day our daily bread.
Day by day is how our bread comes to us. The Lord uses provision to teach us discipline and to rely on Him for our needs. It's the same way He taught and tested the Israelites:
(Exodus 16:4–5 NKJV) Then the LORD said to Moses, "Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you. And the people shall go out and gather a certain quota every day, that I may test them, whether they will walk in My law or not. And it shall be on the sixth day that they shall prepare what they bring in, and it shall be twice as much as they gather daily."
When the Lord rained manna from heaven for the Israelites in the wilderness, it came with strict rules meant to teach them to depend on Him. Each morning there was a new layer of manna on the ground, and the Israelites went out and gathered enough for their family to eat that day.
They had to rise early and get the gathering done, for the manna melted away when the sun grew hot. If they tried to gather too much and stockpile it in their tent, it grew worms and stank by the following morning. They had to collect it day by day.
On Fridays, they were to gather twice as much manna. They kept it overnight, and it lasted them through the Sabbath day and didn't spoil. The Israelites gathered manna six mornings a week and rested on the seventh, for no manna appeared on the Sabbath day. Even today, working seven days a week will not bring you more manna than six, for something will spoil it.
In Mark 6:36, Jesus taught a large group of people. There were over 5,000 men present. At the end of a long day, when they were hungry, the disciples came to Jesus and asked Him to send them away so they could get something to eat. There was no catering from Chik-fil-A back then.
Jesus told the disciples to feed them, but they complained that it would take a year's wages to feed that crowd. So Jesus took five loaves of bread and two fish, gave thanks, broke them into pieces, and the disciples set out over 5,000 happy meals that day. The people ate until they were full, and they picked up twelves baskets of scraps.
Jesus had no "visible" storehouse nor a wagon load of bread with Him that day. Yet, He had everything He needed to feed those people. Do you see the beauty of that? There's an unlimited resource for the obedient, always enough, but it's given as needed daily.
Too often, we have a lottery mentality. We need that giant lump sum to make things right. Everything will be OK when my ship comes in! No, it won't. If you do not faithfully serve the Lord right now in your humble circumstance, you will not serve Him as a billionaire either.
(Luke 16:10–13 NASB) "He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much. "Therefore if you have not been faithful in the use of unrighteous wealth, who will entrust the true riches to you? "And if you have not been faithful in the use of that which is another's, who will give you that which is your own? "No servant can serve two masters; either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth."
The Lord provides what we need for today, and He will take care of tomorrow when it gets here. In Matthew 15:35, Jesus fed another four-thousand-man gathering, along with their wives and children, with seven loaves of bread and a few fish. Jesus didn't need a storehouse, for He had all the resources of heaven available.
In 1 Kings 17:9, the Lord sent the prophet Elijah to live with a widow in Zarephath for a few years. Now she and her son were about to starve to death, for she only had a handful of flour and a little oil in a jar, just enough for one last meal. Yet, when she shared the little she had with the prophet, the Lord caused her flour and oil not to run out. That tiny amount sustained the three of them for years. Each day, there was enough provided for another meal.
Lose the lottery mentality, for your ship has already arrived. When more is needed, more will be given, but always put Him first in your life. When tomorrow comes, it will be taken care of. Seasons of lack are often God's way of correcting our course. At least, it has been that way for me.
(Proverbs 3:5–6 NKJV) Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.
(Proverbs 3:9–10 NKJV) Honor the LORD with your possessions, And with the firstfruits of all your increase; So your barns will be filled with plenty, And your vats will overflow with new wine.
You can pray this with me if you like:
Prayer: Heavenly Father, please speak to me in a way I understand and help me get in tune with what You are doing on the Earth today. I look to You. My help comes from the Lord. Please provide my daily bread. In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen!Read more at: www.refreshinghope.org