Sunday, 26 May 2013

Week 2 Getting From Here to There Moses' Mission - Mind Your Manna's - a talk by Canon Andrew Evans

Inspired by Exodus 16.1-8 and Numbers 11.18-21

Moses got a BIG job from God.  Take a whole nation used to living in slavery and lead them out into the unknown chasing some vague idea of there being a ‘promised’ land somewhere ‘out there’. 

Be fair, God did his bit; raining frogs, turning the Nile red and parting an ocean.  Ok God, for a while the people of Israel got it.  You’re pretty awesome.  A little over six weeks into the journey and the food and water begins to run out, one bit of the desert looks pretty much like another and the nights get jolly cold.  What can we do?  We know, let’s turn on the leadership!

Just a little way into the journey Moses is faced with people who want to turn back.  Slavery wasn’t so bad!  At least we knew where were in the pecking order!  And at least we had food.  Moses asks God what’s it all about?  God provides the nourishment they need, a miraculous gift which when the people see it they ask ‘man-cu?’  Hebrew for ‘what-is-it?’  This in time becomes ‘manna’ the bread of heaven the Welsh tribe so love singing about.  Very nice, thank-you say the people and it keeps them going.  Um, what shall we have for breakfast/lunch/dinner/supper, today? Manna!  Bit like living off Big Macs.  First half dozen are great but after eating buns all the time it gets a little wearisome.  God gets a bit ticked off now.  You want meat?  You can have it not just for one day, or two days, or five days or ten days, but for a whole month.  Indeed so much of it, it’ll come out of your nostrils! (You just gotta love a God with a sense of humour like that).

So often in our church life we look back to the good old days, that golden age we see through rose tinted glasses. (Strange that, you’d think rose glasses would make the age, well sort of rosy).  The past wasn’t so good, actually.  And God does provide us with all the resources we need: people with great skills, money (when we are generous and share) a rich heritage of buildings.  Is it enough?  Thanks for the manna, what about the meat?  Getting from here to there is as much about seeing what we’ve got as what we need. Fear of losing what we’ve got often stops us taking the first bold steps into the unknown and from security to reliance on God’s grace.  Hey, with strong chains around my legs at least I knew how far I could go!  God gives us the resources and makes us resourceful. 

Spend a few moments thinking about your situation.  Are you chained to your past and afraid of striking out in faith?

Are you a resourceful person?  List your skills that could be used for the good of the community.




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