Give Us Today Our Daily Bread
This week, for Mothering Sunday, our children led us in a blessing for mothers and we reflected and sang on the ways God is a Mother to us.
Both blessings and needs are abundant in this season, and as we continue in a reflection of the Lord's Prayer, we reach the line, "Give us today our daily bread." Please see the reflection below.
Part of the reflection acknowledges that when we have abundance, the prayer for daily bread leads us to provide bread for others. Greg Masson shared that 1.4 millions servings are leaving the Gleaners this week, bound for Jamaica. I also shared an urgent appeal for HOPE International. If you would like to give to HOPE Int., here are ways to do so:
- a check written directly to HOPE Int., or written to Kaleden Church with HOPE in the memo line
- an e-transfer to firstname.lastname@example.org with HOPE in the notes
- you can donate on HOPE's website, though we would love to hear about your donation, so that we can note how much is coming from Kaleden to support this good work
- An e-transfer to HOPE: Go to your online banking, select e-transfer, enter:email@example.com and enter the security question “Kaleden asks what village are we helping this year?” Answer: “Garbansa Gallo”. - Credit card: Go to the HOPE webpage https://hope-international.com On the home page, on the top bar it says “Donate”. Click on “Donate, and then in the drop down menu click on “where most needed”. Then on the next drop-down click on “where most needed in general”. Click on the Canadian flag and scroll down to the comment box highlighted "any additional information” write “Garbansa Gallo”
Reflection for May 10th, 2020: Give Us Today Our Daily Bread
A prayer for God to be our provider
Last week I gave a reflection on the opening lines of the Lord’s prayer, and talked about how they set this prayer up as a prayer for all times.
I’d like to reflect now on the next line: “Give us today our daily bread.”
As I said last week, I usually enter prayer because I feel a pressing need for myself,
But the Lord’s prayer orients us first away from ourselves and towards our Father in Heaven.
Here we recognize that we pray to the One upon the throne
Here we acknowledge that God’s will is more important than ours,
and Here we know God is for us, for this world, and for all good things to be true,
Thenwe encounter a pronoun shift.
We move from “your” to “us.”
We move from YourKingdom and Yourwill, to give us, ourdaily bread.
This daily bread is both a prayer for the very real need we have for food,
and it is a metaphor for so much more.
Bread was the fundamental staple food for cultures throughout the Bible, and remains so, alongside of rice in other parts of the world. So bread in the Biblical context is the most common filler of empty stomachs.
And an abundance of bread is a sign of the Kingdom of Heaven. Banquets represent the Kingdom of Heaven among the Old Testament Prophets and in the New Testament parables. Manna – which was bread from heaven – was God’s compassion for hungry people. Jesus told parables about sowers, bread and banquests, and Jesus, more than once, multiplied a few loaves to feed thousands in the desert.
Give us today, our daily bread, means so much more than a dinner roll.
It means, where there is food, where there is a feast, we see the kingdom of God.
And as Jesus multiplied the loaves, to provide daily bread,
We are also called to receive bread when we are hungry,
And in times of abundance, we are called to provide bread for a hungry world.
I am reminded of the story of Joseph in Egypt – someone whose journey led him to be the provider of an entire region when seven years of famine rolled in.
To pray, “give us today our daily bread,” means that we may be called upon to be providers of daily bread.
We do not yet know the economic or poverty impact of this time, or the food production impact, but we do know that there will be an impact. Some will come out just fine, and plenty of communities around the world will not.
One initiative that happens in Kaleden yearly, is the Hope dinner. This is an evening where people interested in hearing about HOPE International and supporting their work, come together for a dinner. This, of course, cannot happen this year,
So instead our Kaleden Hope Committee is working on ways to get the word out about what is happening in some of the desperate places in the world. One place they are really focusing right now is in Ethiopia. Near a place where one of their teams was working on a fresh water project, a landslide came flowing through an entire village, destroying homes, livestock, crops, and unfortunately some lives as well.
And so Hope International has responded to help. And they have done much, but they want to do more, so they have issued an urgent appeal for the funds needed, both for emergency care and long term re-building.
I appreciate the work of Hope International, and I have supported them for years; one reason I have supported them is that they help me join with my brothers and sisters around the world who are praying, “Give us today our daily bread.” (See above for ways to give).
As a final note on this prayer, I want to say praying for our daily bread is an acknowledgement that everything we have is a gift. This world is a gift. This world, which provides everything we need for the preservation of life, is a gift.
Our biblical writer James says,
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.
And so we can pray every day, and at all times: Lord, give us today, our daily bread.