Cherishing the taste
Exodus 16: 31-32, 35 (NIVUK)
31 The people of Israel called the bread manna. It was white like coriander seed and tasted like wafers made with honey. 32 Moses said, ‘This is what the Lord has commanded: “Take an omer of manna and keep it for the generations to come, so they can see the bread I gave you to eat in the wilderness when I brought you out of Egypt.”’
35 The Israelites ate manna for forty years, until they came to a land that was settled; they ate manna until they reached the border of Canaan.
Manna sustained the people of Israel during their 40 years of wandering in the wilderness. The Lord provided enough for each day, and on the eve of the Sabbath enough for two days. Only one piece was preserved, so that generations to come would remember the Lord’s grace and provision for His people. For a people who endured great hardship, the gift of manna sounds both delicious and nutritious. It “tasted like wafers made with honey.”
We can hand down family recipes, of grannie’s Scotch broth or clootie dumpling. Many a grannie, however, never wrote them down. And so no matter how hard we try, still there is something missing! Only the occasional sudden smell may bring it all back to mind.
Some things are worth preserving in life, and the best of them all are those things which remind us of God’s grace and mercy. Grannies are good at handing these things down too — stories of moral values which teach us what is best about life. Part of the lesson of the manna is to cherish the lessons handed down to us, and in our own way to pass these same lessons on.
When you eat today, reflect on what the food or drink reveals about you: your history, your preferences, your identity.
Thank you, Lord, for the variety of food and ways to prepare it, and for the uniqueness that each of us brings to the table of the world. Amen.