He humbled you and let you be hungry, and fed you with manna which you did not know, nor did your fathers know, that He might make you understand that man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by everything that proceeds out of the mouth of the Lord. (Deuteronomy 8:3)
Can a believer go through a season of humility? Can these humbling circumstances extend to the point of hunger? Contrary to the “health-wealth-prosperity-safety” preaching that many believers have been exposed, the answer is, yes. Material wealth destroyed before our eyes. The brokenness of children being snatched from their parents by “accident.” Wasting away on the bed of affliction depresses our spirit, while the ungodly sing and dance happily towards spiritual destruction. The sorrow of a beloved friend turned Judas. Lowliness of spirit arrives through the “handicap” of being deaf, blind, wheelchair-bound, or without limbs. There is the humility of God, who provides all our need in Christ, where we look in the refrigerator – and it is empty.
Are we separated from the love of God? God forbid. Is there purpose to these circumstances? Yes. Does Christ Jesus sustain? He fed you with manna, which you did not know, nor did your fathers know. The purposes are manifold but in this passage the Lord is explicit. The humiliation of our circumstances is to persuade us that life is not bound to the physical. Life is bound to everything that proceeds out of the mouth of the Lord. A man lives by His Word.
Every person in Christ is being sanctified unto this persuasion. But godliness actually is a means of great gain when accompanied by contentment. To say with the prophet, though He slay me, I will hope in Him (Job 13:15), is a mark of full maturity. Is your soul persuaded that life does not consist in any other venue but by everything that proceeds out of the mouth of the Lord? Have humbling circumstances brought you to complaint or life by Christ? You can live hungry. You can enjoy the life of God in the midst of a family member’s death. His Word can enliven your soul during the withering of your health. True life may be maintained while being betrayed by a friend. The physical limitations of this life are no impediment to the life of God in the soul of man.
Believers will have seasons of trial during their pilgrimage. The best preparation is to engraft God’s Word during times of peace. Sit before the Lord. Rejoice in the Word of God being preached. Take joy in edifying conversations that witness of the oracles of God. Feed this day, not merely on physical bread, but on the Word from heaven – Christ Jesus our Lord.