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Seeds of the Kingdom

New Year’s Diet!

by Jilly Lyon Taylor

15 January 2013

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I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day. In this way I will test them and see whether they will follow my instructions.
Exodus 16:4 NIV

During the holiday period most of us tend to overindulge in food and therefore many people begin the New Year with resolutions about what they are going to eat or not eat. While it can be good to do that, I wonder if we pay as much attention to our spiritual diet. Jesus tells us that He is the Bread of Life (John 6:35), and we need to be making it a priority to feed on Him daily for our spiritual life and health.

When God provided manna for His people in the desert after they had come out of Egypt, He gave very clear instructions in Exodus 16 as to how and when they were to gather it. We can find parallels from this for our own lives. First of all, the people had to gather it for themselves, and it is the same for us. Jesus promises to be the Bread of Life for us, but we can’t rely on other people to gather that food for us – we have to come to Jesus ourselves.

Secondly they had to gather it every day (apart from the Sabbath). We need to be feeding on Jesus daily, in a regular manner, and it needs to be our first priority. If the people waited too long after the sun grew hot, the manna melted away. How often do we put off our time with the Lord until we have first checked our emails, read the newspaper, had some food and done some household chores? It must grieve the Lord when we appear to find other things more important than spending time with Him, and I wonder if we sometimes miss opportunities for Him to speak to us when we do that.

God continued to supply the manna throughout the 40 years that His people spent wandering in the wilderness. Even in dry and difficult periods in our lives, God’s provision never fails. Jesus is our Bread of Life in any and every situation, however difficult things may appear. He will never fail us, and we can feed on Him for everything we need. However, we need to be obedient to His instructions and come to Him to gather our ‘manna’ for each day.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You that You are the Bread of Life and that You are everything I need. Forgive me for the times when I have not made it a first priority to seek You and to feed on You. Help me to do this with all my heart in future. Amen.

Jilly Lyon Taylor is part of the Leadership Team at Ellel Pierrepont. She worked in publishing and then with children in Hong Kong before concentrating on being a full-time mother and serving in the local church. Her desire to see people healed led her to the Luke Nine Eleven Training Scheme(NETS) at Pierrepont, and now she teaches and ministers there.

 

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