Give us this day our daily bread… (Matthew 6:11, KJV)
As I was taking my walk this afternoon, letting the brisk air filter in, imagining it filling my lungs with health, I thought of the story of the Israelites receiving manna from above, daily food, and how it was something they could not keep, but rather sustenance they had to enjoy each day, trusting that tomorrow it would return.
Some times are like this, times in which we must focus on the little things, the manna we are given, our physical health, walking step by step with Him.
Getting a cold or other irksome illness brings us close to ourselves, forcing us to pay attention to our physical bodies in a way that we don’t often do. In order to get well, we must eat good food, rest our bodies and minds, get fresh air. We live almost moment by moment.
I suppose I am lucky I can work from home and take naps and walks when I please, but I must say, with asthma, minor illnesses hit hard. A cold makes it difficult to breathe and tends to linger. My energy level is zapped, and I must focus on the essentials, knowing that once health is restored, I will have to hit things harder on the work and home front.
But I am learning to pause, to use these times of illness to restore balance, to take care of my body, to remember that life is more than just deadlines and bills, to remember that there is blessing to self care—to taking one’s vitamins; to eating fresh fruits and vegetables; to the calming ritual of making a pot of tea and letting the steam open the passageways; to taking a gentle walk without the phone, feeling the brisk wind filling up the lungs, listening to the rustle of the trees and the birds flying ahead. There is blessing in taking a nap, in reading an article from a magazine you just couldn’t find the time to read, and in finding poetic passages that enrich your mind and remind you that life is about more, that life is full of beauty and poetry and that even sadness has value.
You find yourself thanking God for his provision, and you let your restless mind wander for a bit (something you are not prone to do in the normal busyness of life), and you find yourself thinking more deeply, thinking about the blessings of manna, thinking about how not everything is permanent. And how this is okay.
He will provide.
There is blessing in the manna days.