Stop Your Complaining and Enjoy God’s Provision (Exodus 16-18)

Written by Chris Jarrell | January 16, 2011 |

“If only the Lord had killed us back in Egypt,” they moaned. “There we sat around pots filled with meat and ate all the bread we wanted. But now you have brought us into this wilderness to starve us all to death.” Exodus 16:3 New Living Translation

Let me start out asking a simple question: How often does God provide and we still complain?  Okay, one more question: Why do we want to go back to our old ways…the ways of bondage and captivity?

Answer to the first question:  We are never satisfied, we think need more but in reality we want more.  Answer to the second question: We want to go back to the easy and familiar even though it is not good for us.  Human nature, we have very short memories and we have very limited patience.  If things are done we want it and the way we think we want it…we start to agitated and begin to complain.  We know what is better for us right?  Atleast we think we know.  We believe, if we are in charge, there will be a better outcome.  We fool ourselves into believing these lies.

What we see in our passages today that the people, the nation, the congregation of Israel…complaining to God, complaining about God, pitying themselves, fighting among themselves,

How does God respond to His children that He loves…very simply He provides.  He provides fresh quail, fresh made manna and fresh water to drink.  He does not even let them eat the leftovers…everyday He provides fresh food for them to eat. You know what else they have to work or slave for it.  They wake up and BAM there it is.  They are getting their protein and carbs, God is providing for their every need when they need it and they don’t even have to work for it, just receive it with a gracious heart.

Here is what the Israelites forgot, and here is what we so often forget as well…What makes this passage so striking is that it happened only 6 weeks after the supernatural deliverance from Egypt and the parting of the Red Sea! The Scripture shows us that we can see miracles in front of us yet still question God’s care in our lives. Our fallen minds have a hard time remembering God’s provision in the midst of our current crisis or situations, so we have to make it a habit to remind ourselves of all that God has done in the past. He was faithful then and He will be faithful now!  Here is something we can hold on to…God loves us, He is faithful to us in spite of our own attitudes.

Let me give you something very practical and tangible to help us remember all that God has done so we can stop complaining and enjoy God’s provision:
-Keep a gratitude journal, write down all those things that you are thankful for God for, this will help you to remember His faithfulness and goodness.
-Write down those times where God has worked in your life.  The shortest pencil is longer that the longest memory.
-Wake up and go to sleep thanking God for who He is…and all that He has done.
-Share with others God’s faithfulness to you, so they can remind you later when times are tough.