As the Christmas Season is fast approaching, I’m adding a new item on my Gift List: Bread. The idea came to me as I was reading the words of the richest and wisest man of his time, King Solomon. “Cast your bread upon the waters, for you will find it after many days. Give a portion to seven, or even to eight, for you know not what disaster may happen on the earth.” Ecclesiastes 11:1-2
After I read the verse, a childhood memory came flashing back . It’s one of my favorite places, my grandmother’s house on Skinner’s Lake. My grandmother had loaves of day old bread she purchased at the bread store for “her fish”. She would say to me, “go feed the fish’. I went to her refrigerator, reached my hand in the bread bag and pulled out a couple of slices. I headed out the door, and down her long dock. Next, I started breaking the slices into smaller pieces, and tossed them into the water. Within seconds, the bread would start to move, then disappear as the hungry fish devoured the bread! This small act of feeding the fish brought joy and excitement to me.
Looking back to Solomon’s advice, his intention was not for us to ” go feed the fish.” This verse can be interpreted several ways, with one being sharing our possessions with the poor. Solomon also wrote in Proverbs 19:17, “Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will repay him for his deed. We all like to give and receive at Christmas. When we share our “bread” or possessions with the poor, we are giving it to the Lord, and He gives the best gifts back in return! We will “find our bread after many days”, as Ecclesiastes 11:1 states. We will have kindness shown back to us through other ways.
The “Bread of Life”, who came to earth the first Christmas, instructs His followers with the following command:
This Christmas, as I celebrate the birth of My Savior, I want to be more intentional with giving my bread to the poor. Really, it’s not my bread. It is God’s bread. Every blessing I have comes from His hand alone. Today, there are many people, near and far, who are drowning in the troubled waters on life’s sea. We see their faces in our neighborhoods, marketplaces, schools, work, church, and even across the ocean. We have the “bread” in our hand to toss out to them. The question is, are we going to hold on tightly to the bread God has blessed us with, and ignore Christ’s instruction to us, or are we going to have an open, gracious handful of bread to share? I encourage you to add Bread to your Christmas List this year, and share with someone who cannot give you anything in return. And while you are doing it, introduce them to the Bread of Life.