Jordan Ministries
Embracing God's Promise of Abundance When Hardship Endures
What Stinks?
by Jenny on April 6th, 2016

"But some of them didn't listen and kept some of it until morning. But by then it was full of maggots and had a terrible smell." Exodus 16:20

I have five children. We homeschool. And my husband works from home. Our little abode teems with music, laughter, dancing, dad behind closed office doors wearing earplugs, occasional sibling arguing, shushing, schoolwork, much laundry, messes in the kitchen, homemade artwork and funny smells.

After morning chores my older children and I attempt to tackle schoolwork. The younger children play nearby but on account of their young ages their distractions never cease. Yesterday, just as I engaged in deep discussion about a particular topic my toddler wrinkled his nose, pretended to "sniff" his baby brother and proclaimed, "Someping Dinks!"

A baby's soiled diaper can fill a home with a smell so offensive that it causes everyone in the room to seek shelter elsewhere. Have you ever noticed that a smelly attitude produces the same result?

My youngest no longer bears the blame for the stench in the room. I'm guilty too.

Try as I may I just can't seem to get it "all" done. When I can't get it "all" done I feel like a failure. I become frustrated and overwhelmed, and those feelings leave me and my attitude, well . . . smelly.

Yesterday (after remedying the dirty diaper) I read with my first grader the story of God providing food for the Israelites during their time in the wilderness. Each morning the Israelites awoke to find manna, a flaky, bread-like substance God gave His people to eat. God instructed each family to gather daily enough manna for that day. God warned His people not to gather more than what each family could consume in one day. But Moses tells us in Exodus 16:20 that some of the Israelites didn't listen, and the "extra" that they put on their plates filled with maggots and stunk up their tents.

Throughout Scripture God promises to give me all that I need (Matthew 6:33, Philippians 4:19). But God doesn't dump a week-load of sustenance on me. Rather, God gives me what I need for the day. God knows I can't be trusted with a week's worth of provisions. He gives me enough for one day so that I will return to Him day after day for more.

When I put on my plate more than God intended for me to consume in one day, the "extra" weighs me down. The "extra" rots away at my soul, generating in me an attitude that smells so bad people just want to leave the room.

In Matthew 6:34 Jesus warned us not to take on more trouble than what God intended. Jesus said, "Don't worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today's trouble is enough for today."

Proverbs 4:25-27 say, "Look straight ahead, and fix your eyes on what lies before you. Mark out a straight path for your feet . . . don't get sidetracked."

Hebrews 12:1-2 reminds us to, "Run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus."

When I focus on what lies in front of me today, and only today, I find God has given me just the right amount of strength to finish the day with a happy, peace-filled heart. Rather than piling on my plate more than I can handle, let me serve myself only that which God places directly before me. Then, by God's grace and mercy, my life will give off to all in the room the pleasing aroma of Christ.

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Bunky Mondor - April 6th, 2016 at 6:26 AM
I really enjoyed reading this today! It came on a day I was beginning to feel overwhelmed and annoyed with tasks that lay before me at work and I was dreading going into the office today. This helped me put things back in perspective! Thanks Jenny!! And I love your profile... Nerds rule! God bless!
Christy - April 6th, 2016 at 8:45 AM
Good thought for the day. I am beginning to see that paying it forward is what the Lord is asking of us these days. It is becoming clear that God's purpose and plan is not always what we expect. So don't ask just go with the flow--what is directly before us! Well said.
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Crossing Your Jordan

I am a stay-at-home, homeschooling, Bible-teaching mom of six, and wife to my college sweetheart. I believe everyone can live a life of abundance through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and radical obedience to His Word.

Do you have a relationship with God through Christ? If not, I would consider it pure joy to tell you about God, why you need Him, and how to be reconciled to Him through Christ.

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