When it comes to yummy treats, children often don’t want to share.
When my father was a little boy, he and his brother would almost come to blows when it was time for dessert. There would be loud protests if one brother thought he was getting a smaller slice of pie.
So my grandparents came up with a rule: one brother would cut the pieces, and the other would get to choose his portion first.
The idea behind this arrangement was that if the pieces had been cut unequally by the first brother, the other would take advantage of this and choose the larger slice. So the boy cutting the pieces would want to make sure that they were as close in size as possible.
My dad or his brother would actually use a protractor to cut the pie to ensure that each slice was exactly the same angle. Each was determined not to let his brother get a larger piece!
This is a humorous story, but the attitude it portrays can linger in our thoughts as we become adults.
It can even affect how we view God’s beneficence.
We’re somehow afraid that when God divvies things up, there won’t be enough for us. We think that if God gives someone else certain blessings or gifts, it will mean less is available for us.
But God’s economy doesn’t work this way—it’s not a zero sum game.
Don’t you love it when someone anticipates your needs?
You feel good when someone makes provision for something you’ll require before the need even arises. Or when they start setting in motion something for you before you even ask.
It makes you feel sort of special, doesn’t it?
As a teen, I’d occasionally stop by a small fish-and-chip joint on my way home from school. This little restaurant had an open kitchen, and the owner/cook could see the street through the front window.
Carlo, the owner, would see me get off the bus and wait at the lights. He knew what I liked to eat, so he’d start deep-frying my halibut before I even crossed the street and entered his restaurant.
He anticipated what I’d want and started cooking it before I even placed my order.
God does the same sort of thing for us, too.
Don’t you love recipes that are so simple that you can easily memorize them?
The ingredients list isn’t too long, and the items are probably measured in even cups or teaspoons, not fractions.
You’ve made the dish so often that the instructions are now fixed in your head. You don’t have to go rifling through your recipe box or searching your online files to find the recipe.
Even years later, you can still bring the recipe to mind and whip up the dish reliably.
You’ll never forget it.
There are things that God will never forget, either.
I heard a pastor say that “God has not forgotten the recipe for manna.”
God still remembers how to cook up whatever you need and get it to you!