Ordinary Time


God has never let you down, never looked the other way when you were being kicked around.

He has never wandered off to do his own thing; he has been right there, listening.

from Psalm 22:22-24 (The Message)


The whole Israelite community complained against Moses and Aaron in the desert. The Israelites said to them, “Oh, how we wish that the Lord had just put us to death while we were still in the land of Egypt. There we could sit by the pots cooking meat and eat our fill of bread. Instead, you’ve brought us out into this desert to starve this whole assembly to death.”

Then the Lord said to Moses, “I’m going to make bread rain down from the sky for you. The people will go out each day and gather just enough for that day. In this way, I’ll test them to see whether or not they follow my Instruction. On the sixth day, when they measure out what they have collected, it will be twice as much as they collected on other days.”

Exodus 16:2-5


If I were one of the Israelites at this point, I would have complained, too. Forced to leave their homes with little notice, chased by Egyptians in war chariots, they now faced food insecurity and an uncertain trek across a desert.

Like them, I might even have gotten nostalgic for my former life: those wonderful dinners in Egypt! Pots full of meaty stew! “Why didn’t we just stay?” I might cry.

The amazing thing about this passage is that God doesn’t scold them for complaining. God doesn’t remind them that they had been slaves in Egypt, crying out for help, nor does God point out that those pots full of meaty stew had probably been cooked for their Egyptian oppressors.

Instead God hears them. And listening to the complaints, God explains to Moses that he will provide for the Israelites. There won’t be meaty stews, but bread will rain down from heaven.

How reassuring this passage is! God listens to our complaints and provides what we need, raining down blessings upon us.

Jane Claspy Nesmith

Question to Ponder:

What complaints do you have for God today? Go ahead and complain: God can take it!


When I am discouraged and start to complain, God, remind me that you will provide me with what I need for each day.

Turn my complaints into prayers and my discouragement into hope.



Here’s the story I’ll tell my friends when they come to worship, and punctuate it with Hallelujahs:

Shout Hallelujah, you God-worshipers; give glory, you sons of Jacob; adore him, you daughters of Israel.

God has never let you down.

from Psalm 22:22-24 (The Message)