Both the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Food Program report that 1.02 billion people (15 percent of the world population) went to bed hungry in 2009. Every day, 18,000 children under the age of 5 die from hunger-related causes—one child every 5 seconds. The urgent cry of these 1.02 billion people is, “Give us today the food we need” (Matthew 6:11).
For Christians living in affluent countries, there will be food on the table tonight. And we seldom buy food for just one day, relying instead on quantities of stored provisions that make our next meal no big deal. Perhaps only in times of economic downturn and job losses do we begin to pray, “Give us each day the food we need” (Luke 11:3).
These words teach us that nothing is too small to bring to God. He cares for us intensely because we are His children. As a loving Father, He knows what we need, and no request is too minute for Him to receive (Matthew 6:30-33). So as we pray, we remember:
• God will provide. If our earthly parents won’t give us a stone when we ask for bread (Matthew 7:9-11), surely our heavenly Father who feeds the birds will also feed us (Matthew 6:26; Job 38:41; Psalm 145:15-17; Philippians 4:19).
• We must not be selfish. Give us (not me) today the food we (not I) need. If my Father supplies me with two loaves of bread, and my brother has none, the second loaf is not for storing in my refrigerator but for sharing with my brother (Deuteronomy 15:7-11; Leviticus 23:22).
• We need to be content. Living in a consumerist culture with its insatiable desires, we crave for more and more. We must learn how to be content with what the Lord has already given us (Philippians 4:11-13).
Our daily bread is all we really need.
• Proverbs 30:8-9
• Matthew 6:25-33
• 1 Timothy 6:6-8
What can you do to help feed the poor and hungry in your community? What can you do with your second loaf of bread?