Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Whine, Cheese and Manna

I had weight loss surgery last year (the Lap-band), and as part of the recovery process I was limited to a full-liquid diet for 3 weeks. Basically, I was allowed to eat protein shakes, yogurt, chicken broth, pudding, and that’s it. It was right in the middle of this diet when the melt-down happened. My cravings for “real food” seemed too much to take, and the thought of protein shakes for another week and a half was just unbearable. I even sent a desperate email to my nutritionist to see if there was something, anything else I could eat.

However, in the midst of this meltdown, I was suddenly reminded of the Israelites. God had freed them from slavery and oppression, miraculously saved them from Pharoah’s army, and provided them with manna that fell from heaven and water that flowed from rocks. And, how did they show their appreciation to God? They complained about the manna. They gathered more than they needed. They grumbled about their circumstances.

And, you know what? That’s exactly what I was doing! In less than 2 weeks time I had gone from praising God for the opportunity to have this surgery…freeing me from my addiction to food and an unhealthy lifestyle…to griping about a short term diet designed to help me recover from surgery and have the best possible outcome. Just like the Israelites, I was complaining about the manna.

Unfortunately, it’s not the first time that I have quickly forgotten God’s blessings. How about you? Think of a time that God pulled you out of a painful situation, leaving you to jumping for joy. Are you still jumping? Maybe he provided you with a wonderful new job that now feels more like a daily grind. Perhaps it’s the spouse who God provided as an answer to your prayers. As the years have passed, are you still thanking God for him or her? How about your kids, do you spend more time complaining about them or praising God for the gift of a family?

I encourage you to take some time today look for the Manna in your life. If, you find that instead of thanking God for it, you’re complaining about it…ask Him for forgiveness. Pray that God will point out and renew your appreciation for each blessing that has fallen from heaven on your life.

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