For as long as I can remember I've been the kind of person that thinks best in the morning time. However, I have never considered myself a true morning person because I don’t “hit the ground running”.
As a wife and a mom of two boys – a two-year-old and a six-month-old - I have discovered a special love for early mornings before everyone is awake. I love the peace that comes with waking up, making coffee, and sitting down on the couch with my Bible and prayer journal. I personally choose mornings when possible so that I feel better prepared to face anything that comes my way throughout the day.
One particular morning Nathan left for the church super early and both of our boys woke up earlier than usual. I became 100% focused on their desire for quality time and made a mental note to prioritize their nap time to focus on intentional prayer and personal devotion.
About mid-morning I was in my kitchen looking through our pantry trying to decide what I could make for lunch. I knew I was getting close to needing to make a grocery store run and stock back up our usual go-to's. I was attempting to recall all the things I know how to cook so I could just throw something together with “staple” ingredients.
Last year for Christmas I received a Magnolia Table Cook Book and I love it! I highly recommend it! Joanna Gaines is known for her "good taste". She turns houses into homes, she is tremendously creative, and she also has a reputation for being a good cook.
There is a page at the beginning of the cookbook that really caught my attention. It’s entitled “The Pantry” and the first paragraph says, “Here’s what I always have on hand in my fridge and pantry for when I want to whip up something quick, whether it’s dinner or freshly baked cookies.”
She includes a checklist in a Joanna Gaines organized fashion of “staple” items to always have on hand so you can cook a yummy meal. The categories are: refrigerated items, produce, dry goods, spices, and oils.
I couldn’t help but realize I was anxious reading over the list. It hit me that I was missing an important “staple” in my spiritual diet that day. I needed to restock my mind by going to the Lord in prayer and reading His word.
I Googled the definition of “staple foods” and what I read gave me chills!
“A staple food is a food that is eaten routinely and in such quantities that it constitutes a dominant portion of a standard diet for a given people, supplying a large fraction of energy needs and generally forming a significant proportion of the intake of other nutrients as well.”
Do you know what you can make if you have all of the items on “The Pantry” checklist?
You know what we should be eating routinely in our spiritual lives as a given people? BREAD!
Jesus says in Matthew 6:11 “Give us this day our daily bread.”
What did he mean? Are we supposed to bake bread and eat it on a daily basis for our physical bodies AND our spirits?
John 6 tells us of the time Jesus took five loaves and two fish and fed over 5,000 people. This is the most incredible “whipping something up” miracle that you could ever hear about! Is this what he was referring to when He said “give us this day our daily bread”?
Skip down to verses 31-35
31 "Our fathers ate the manna in the desert; as it is written, 'He gave them bread from heaven to eat.' " 32 Then Jesus said to them, "Most assuredly, I say to you, Moses did not give you the bread from heaven, but My Father gives you the true bread from heaven. 33 "For the bread of God is He who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world." 34 Then they said to Him, "Lord, give us this bread always." 35 And Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.
For Moses and the children of Israel, the miracle of daily bread from Heaven was vital to their survival. They needed physical food and God provided bread from Heaven. Bread was their main course meal. It was tangible bread that helped sustain their bodies.
But Jesus, after reminding his people of the physical miracle performed for the children of Israel, stated “I AM THE BREAD OF LIFE. He who comes to me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.”
Prayer and devotion every day is our daily bread! Jesus is the bread of life. If we go to him in prayer and devotion, we will never hunger. This should be our standard diet as a given people.
I closed my cookbook and noticed what the cover said in that moment…
“a collection of recipes for gathering…”
When we keep inventory on spiritual staples in our personal lives, it will develop an incredible recipe for when we gather!!!! We’re breaking bread together when we congregate together at church. We’re giving ourselves to the Lord in worship, we’re attentive to the word of the Lord coming forth from our pastors, and hopefully we’re givers as well as receivers of encouragement. It’s quite a spiritual feast when we gather.
Right now we’re in the middle of a Pandemic. We haven’t been able to congregate together as a church family for over four weeks. We’ve had to be intentional in our personal lives to partake of daily bread. Several have grown spiritually and created a stronger relationship with God than ever before! But it can’t just be until we’re back at church where we can attempt to depend solely on our pastor’s relationship with God.
Make sure you have spiritual essentials in your home. Daily prayer, fasting, devotion, and bear all of the fruits of the spirit.
Matthew 25: 1-13 says
1 "Then the kingdom of heaven shall be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. 2 "Now five of them were wise, and five [were] foolish. 3 "Those who [were] foolish took their lamps and took no oil with them, 4 "but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. 5 "But while the bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept. 6 "And at midnight a cry was [heard]: 'Behold, the bridegroom is coming; go out to meet him!' 7 "Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. 8 "And the foolish said to the wise, 'Give us [some] of your oil, for our lamps are going out.' 9 "But the wise answered, saying, '[No], lest there should not be enough for us and you; but go rather to those who sell, and buy for yourselves.' 10 "And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding; and the door was shut. 11 "Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, 'Lord, Lord, open to us!' 12 "But he answered and said, 'Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.' 13 "Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming.
Here’s the thing…
The ten virgins all being there and ready for the bridegroom literally meant there was not a lack of knowledge about the bridge grooms return. They had the knowledge! The foolish virgins lacked preparation.
I may know what I need to be ready to cook a great meal for my family to enjoy, but if I'm not prepared with the ingredients to cook it, it won't be successful.
We are staying stocked up on groceries because we wanted to be prepared for anything that happens during a governmental shut down!
Let's be sure we're stocked up on spiritual food for the returning of the Lord.
I hope this encourages you today. Much love to you all!