Jesus, cautioning against worry, asked: “Which of you, by worrying, can add a single hour to your life?”
He might as well have asked: “Which of you, by worrying, can do anything?”
In the desert, when Israel ran out of food, God provided a sweet substance Israel called “manna” (Exodus 16). Moses refers to that event in chapter eight and says, not that God allowed them to be hungry, but that he caused them to hunger. Then, God gave them food.
Why would God cause hunger?
The answer comes quickly: that Israel might learn not to live on bread alone – on what she can see or what she knows, but to depend on God.
Moses makes the comment twice that manna was something Israel had not known before. God had thought “outside the box” and simply created a new food – one that had never existed before and which would cease to exist soon enough, when Israel entered the promised land.
This second speech of Moses has some cautionary notes: Israel was delivered and given a law. Her past was dependent on God’s grace. The future blessings of His grace were dependent on her keeping the will of God – not that she had to earn the blessings, but that she had to keep from losing them. She could lose them by being too influenced by the sinful nations around her. She could lose them by thinking that she deserved them. She could lose them by coming to believe that she had produced them herself rather than be the beneficiary of a benevolent God.
We should never limit our horizon by what we know or can see. Faith involves looking beyond both to the God who not only knows what’s beyond the horizon, but can make it to be anything we need – even something never seen or known before.