What to Do With a Crust of Bread

3/03/2008

It doesn't take much to expose my wicked heart. God doesn't need to toss me into prison or break my fibula to reveal the discontentment that lurks in my inner recesses. Sometimes all it takes is my wife Kristi telling me what's for dinner when I get home from work. "I thought we'd have leftovers tonight," she says on rare occasions. I sigh, and offer up a barely audible "great,” mustering as much excitement as if she'd told me we were having roadkill.

Why am I so ungrateful at times? Discontentment reveals that I am taking delight in something other than Jesus Christ. It shows that I'm looking to my circumstances for my joy, not to the God of my salvation.

This is just the opposite of a woman Charles Spurgeon spoke of:


"I have heard of some good old woman in a cottage, who had nothing but a piece of bread and a little water. Lifting up her hands, she said as a blessing, "What! All this, and Christ too?"

This woman realized that Jesus Christ was her all in all. He was her bread of life, her spring of living water. Jesus was her treasure and all her joy was in him. That's why she could rejoice in a crust of bread and a little water. Her joy came from Jesus, not her circumstances.

When we look to the things of this world to provide our joy we will always be disappointed, for we have been designed to find our satisfaction in God alone:

“Come, everyone who thirsts,
come to the waters;
and he who has no money,
come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
without money and without price.
Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread,

and your labor for that which does not satisfy?

Listen diligently to me, and eat what is good,
and delight yourselves in rich food" (Isaiah 55:1-2).


God tells us not to spend our money for that which is not bread – in other words, don’t live for the things of this world. They are like plastic fruit, which might look tasty, but won’t satisfy. But pursue him who truly satisfies, Jesus Christ, the bread of life. If we have Jesus then we don't need anything else. If we have Jesus, then all other blessings are just extras - icing on the cake.

If the poor woman Spurgeon mentioned could rejoice over a crust of bread, how much more should we be thankful who have Christ plus a thousand other blessings in our lives. How about you? Can you say this about your life today - “What! All this, and Christ too?”

I resolve by God's grace, that the next time Kristi informs me that we are having leftovers, I will lift up my hands and joyfully declare, "What! All this, and Christ too?"

Posted by Mark Altrogge at 8:00 AM  

4 comments:

I thank God for this reminder! This is truly remedy for my heart, so bent on running after the trivialities of this world.

Thank you, Pastor Mark.

jefflo said...
March 3, 2008 at 1:24 AM  

Thanks Jefflo - I'm the president of the Hearts Who Run After Worthless Things Club. Sure am glad we have a Savior.

Mark Altrogge said...
March 3, 2008 at 10:19 AM  

Mark,

I will never forget one time when you were sharing a story with our church about going on a cruise and complaining about how big the shrimp were and then how God graciously showed you your error. I love that story and funny enough think of it often when I'm tempted to complain about good things (like rain!). Wow, all this and Christ too! My heart is leaping with joy! Thanks for the reminder.

p.s. I'm going to hold you to that complimentary copy ;)

Trillia said...
March 4, 2008 at 1:01 PM  

Hi Trillia,

Yeah, my shrimp story - yes I often tell that one to show how discontented my heart can be.

Thanks for commenting!

Mark Altrogge said...
March 4, 2008 at 6:21 PM  

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