Exodus 16-18 tells the story of several events during the Exodus of the Hebrews out of Egypt, but I thought of my breakfast when I read about the story of the manna and the quail. I am a creature of habit. Pretty much every day, I have the same breakfast. A glass of orange juice and a bowl (in one of the “monster bowls” that my kids made for me) of vanilla yogurt, granola, and some kind of fruit (usually strawberries or raspberries). My kids make fun of me having the same thing every day and I often hear the question, “don’t you get tired of it?” I really don’t. Its healthy. Its easy. Its good.
But I know that’s not for everyone. Clearly some of the Hebrews in the desert were not big fans of eating the same thing day after day – the manna in the morning, the quail in the evening. I can imagine how that would get old after a while. And their grumbling that we will read about in the coming chapters doesn’t rub God the right way. But that’s another story.
It did get me thinking though about the many who don’t have a choice about what they have to eat. I have a choice each morning. I can have my yogurt, fruit, and granola. Or I could have cereal. Or pancakes. Or a slice of cold pizza. But how many day after day after day have no choice in the matter but to eat the same thing day in and day out.
A few years ago, I participated in a program called Stop Hunger Now which packs 1000s of meals for people each day throughout the world. What they package up is a nutritious mix of rice, beans, a vitamin pellet (yes, a vitamin pellet) and a variety of other things. Basically, add some water, heat it and eat it. But as we were packing these meals, I wondered how it would actually taste. And how would it taste every day? I am by no means trashing the work of SHN but just got me thinking about being mindful of others as I eat my meals each day – whether its the yogurt parfait I make each morning or whether its a sandwich at lunch or something entirely different at dinner. I am blessed. But I need to bless others.