Recently I have been amazed at the provision of God, to meet me in times of prayer, to “tweet” me messages of encouragement when needed and inspire me when I am feeling dry. At the same time, I am also aware that I must cultivate an awareness of this provision and an attitude of thanksgiving. God invites me to a rhythm that fosters an awareness of his provision each day.
When I arrived at work today, I met a friend who shared with me that she had been praying for our trip with our son… that we would sense God’s presence with us. I was amazed! The very thing she prayed for, we experienced in our many God tweets during our visit to the university. My heart was warmed as she shared with me the words and frequency of her prayers for our family. More manna! More to feast on!
I am reminded of how God provided manna for the children of Israel as they wondered about the wilderness. The interesting thing about the manna is that they could only gather enough for one day. If they gathered more than what they needed, it was rotten the next morning. Sometimes, I think we spend too much time dwelling on the past or thinking about the future and miss the fresh manna for the day.
I have been reading “Receiving the Day: Christian Practices for Opening the Gift of Time” by Dorothy Bass for the past several weeks. I am especially challenged to begin each day with words of thanksgiving and looking for the new things that God desires to give me in each day. She writes: “The practice of embracing this day is distilled in a daily rhythm of worship. It becomes a faithful practice, however, when the dispositions these rhythms foster spill over from formal settings of prayer into the other activities of daily life.”
To fully enjoy the feast God has prepared for us each day, we need to practice embracing the day by spending time with God, reading scripture, praying, reflecting on the God moments in our lives, blogging (a new way to journal, folks!). Dorothy Bass shares a story about a young mother she knows who fosters this kind of practice in her children. She writes:
“A mother I know has a different way of asking the same question. As she tucks her children into bed each night, their teeth brushed and their hair still damp from the bathtub, she asks them a question: “Where did you meet God today?” And they tell her, one by one: a teacher helped me, there was a homeless person in the park, I saw a tree with lots of flowers in it. She tells them where she met God, too. Before the children drop off to sleep, the stuff of this day has become the substance of their prayer.”
For now, I choose to practice looking for the manna God has provided in each day, but I long for the day that it moves from a formal practice to a natural spilling over into my daily routines. I long for it to become like breathing.