Provision for the Journey

Provision for the Journey
Mark 6:7-13
Tamika Brown

It is very rare that I leave the house without a bag. Not a purse, but a bag of some sort. A reusable shopping bag – of varying size, a backpack, etc. I don’t do this as a style choice, but instead as a “just in case”.  I almost always have some sort of snack and beverage on hand. And bless my child’s heart, I am raising him the same way. Before leaving the house, I ask him “is your bag packed?” Provision.

There may be traffic. The meeting might go long. What if I get hungry? What if I get thirsty? What if I need to respond to an email? I don’t know about you but being “hangry” is not a good look for me! Provision.

Provision is defined as “the providing or supplying of something, especially of food or other necessities; arrangement or preparation beforehand, as for the doing of something, the meeting of needs, the supplying of means, etc.”

In this text, Jesus sends out the twelve disciples among the people to teach. They are sent out with nothing but instructions, the clothes on their backs and the sandals on their feet. Provision? Um, at first blush, I would say no, absolutely not!

Although the text doesn’t mention it, I can imagine that at least one or two of the disciples had questions or concerns about this assignment. I mean, isn’t it only human to consider the “what ifs”? What if no one gives us food or water? What if it gets cold? What if it gets hot. What if the people slam the doors in our faces?

In our daily journey, our comings and goings, provision is what we carry WITH us. On our spiritual journey, provision is what we carry IN us. The disciples had enough faith, enough trust, enough belief and enough knowing to put all the “what ifs?” away.

This Lenten season is not only about abstaining, it is also about reflection. It is about asking ourselves whether or not we have enough faith for the journey and if the answer is no – which is okay if it ishow then do we increase our faith? What must we do in order to gather our fortitude, our provision for this life journey? What must we do to truly trust God’s instruction?

God, my God, thank you for new opportunities to prepare for the journey. Thank you God for your provision even when you have to fill us again and again as we falter along the way. Continue to lead us, guide us and remind us that in You we have all that we need. Amen.
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