The Offering

October 14, 2013
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Listen while you read: "Come Ye Thankful People Come"1 (Lyrics)

Mark 6:41-44 – Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, [Jesus] gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to his disciples to set before the people. He also divided the two fish among them all. They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces of bread and fish. The number of the men who had eaten was five thousand. (NIV)

I had often read and been told that as we get older, we need less sleep. I did not find this to be true. What I did discover is that though I was sleeping less, I was no less tired. And when I am tired, I struggle with feeling cross, crabby, and discouraged, especially when I am lying in bed hour after hour unable to sleep, knowing that morning will soon arrive and it will be time to get up and go to work, exhausted once again.

Such times of sleeplessness, I have also learned, come and go in cycles. The majority of my aging friends confide that they, too, struggle with this issue, and the doctor says that there really isn't much to be done about it other than to accept that it is part of the aging process and to try and catnap as time allows.

Anyway, one morning as I crept from my bed after another night of minimum sleep, I began grumbling in earnest to God about the situation and how unfair it was. You know I have to get up and go to work, and yet how am I supposed to do all I need to do, and do a good job of it, when I am so tired yet again? And that was when that still, small voice whispered these words within my mind: Remember the loaves and fishes and look up to heaven and give thanks.

And so, that is what I began to do and continue to do. I thank God for the sleep I have received, no matter how minimal, and that it will be sufficient for the tasks at hand. And much to my amazement, it always is. In fact, I usually have not only enough energy for what must be done, but also energy left over for the things that I really want to do, without feeling cross, crabby, and discouraged from lack of sleep.

So today, if you are struggling with a lack: lack of sleep, talent, money, wisdom, in fact, a lack of anything, remember the loaves and fishes, and look up to heaven, and give thanks for what you do have, and then, be prepared to see how God blesses it.

Prayer: Father God, thank You that even the smallest offering that we lift up to You becomes more than enough in Your hands. Bless us this day with faith to offer and receive. In Christ's name, we pray. Amen.

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About the author:

Lynne Phipps <>
Atlin, British Columbia, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    An attitude of gratitude! Amen.

    You must have written that for me, haha. Been there and still am.

    What a wonderful “attitude of gratitude” to develop! We give thanks for you and your willingness to continue to inspire us. Thank you so much, Lynne.

    I have enjoyed your devotions over the years.
    Thank you for writing and encouraging us!

    What a wonderful way of looking at it Lynn! I loved how you applied the five loaves and two fish to a variety of circumstances. This is one message I will not likely forget.

    Excellent as always Lynne.
    I’m sure I speak for many in being Thankful for your wonderful contributions to “Daily”.
    I trust you are having a peaceful Thanksgiving Day.

    Oh, Lynne!
    I am sooo glad you listened and took to heart a wonderful revelation of God’s wisdom.
    Thank YOU for writing to us. I will apply it beginning this morning.

    You turned the lack of sleep around.
    Even a little turns to a huge blessing with God.
    Thanks for the subject.

    Dear Lynne,
    I can commiserate with you re: getting enough sleep. This aging process does interfere with our sleep patterns; however, I do thank Him for what I do get.
    And, I know I thank God for you. Have a great season of Thanksgiving.

    Thank you again Lynne. I am sure that you have struck a sure vein with many. I have learned through the years to take time, when I can’t sleep, to count my many blessings. I have so many since I am almost 90 and still able to live on my own.
    It is so soothing and even though I don’t sleep I find rest in this. Blessings.

    Wonderful Lynne, as usual. Isn’t it frustrating to be so often just lying in bed unable to sleep and yet not ready to start the day! It always surprises me when I seem to have enough energy in spite of not having slept that well. The Lord sure doesn’t let us down! Have a wonderful thanksgiving weekend … Well it’s nearly over now but may what remains be filled with joy.

    I am astounded by the way devotionals flow from you with so much meaning, instruction and comfort. Of course, I am easily convinced that God is at the helm. and that the benefits flow to me. What a great reason for Thanksgiving!.

    Dear Lynne, You certainly hit on a subject that effects so many of us. Truer words were never written as to how we feel after sleep depredation.
    I will certainly heed your advice starting immediately.
    A wonderful devotional with advice for all of us.
    Keep writing.

    Dear Brethren,
    God bless for this wonderful piece of writing and thought provoking areas of our lives.
    I must confess that there are times I’m torn between the answer to prayer as to whether its “NO” or WAIT”
    I’m convinced greater things are ahead and though it tarries wait. Amen.
    Thank You.

    Oh, yes, I have a lot of this. I just live with it, but never thought of thanking God for the night of sleep I had. I will begin to do that.
    I find if I don’t go to bed until 12 at night, I will sleep better, but oh I always dream all night LONG. So busy in them. I feel this is why I am more tired in the morning than when I went to bed!!
    Thanks for your “waking” me up to doing this.
    We are having a beautiful rain which in our area of Iowa we are really lacking. I did Thank God for that.

    Hi Lynne,
    No truer words were ever spoken. Thankfulness always brings blessings; an appropriate thought for this special season.
    I had a similar experience when I was feel sorry for myself in that I can no longer enjoy the many sports I so enjoyed just a few short years ago. Then the thought came, just be thankful that you had the enjoyment of playing those sports instead of grumbling. So I immediately told the Lord I was thankful and I meant it. It made all the difference in my day.
    Have a great day, and Happy Thanksgiving!

    Perfect are your words of wisdom!
    I too suffer from sporadic insomnia, and can watch the hours fly by as I lay awake.
    It’s at those times that I give it up to the Lord, and ask Him for his guidance and his message. And like you, I end with asking for enough power to do my job. I ask that His power shine in me at work, and energize.
    It’s amazing how HE never fails to provide, and I’m energized at work all day.
    Your words, as always hit home…

    Dear Lynne,
    Just right for Thanksgiving!
    I especially enjoyed its climatic ending:
    … remember the loaves and fishes, and look up to heaven, and give thanks for what you do have, and then, be prepared to see how God blesses it.
    And about sleeplessness: So your doctor advises cat-naps: My suggestion is to limit the time of your cat-nap. I cannot sleep well at night if I do not set a minute-minder to limit the time of the cat-nap — say to half an hour or so — else my body gets the silly idea it has already had its night and should stay awake for the wee a.m. hours.
    Keep writing.

    I read this devotion website every day. I often share its message with my group of seniors who meet twice a month.
    I had to share my sleeplessness experience. I am retired but like all retirees, my days & nights are full..mostly good things of my choosing. Years ago when I first started having those very early hours of wakefulness I prayed that God would please bless me with sleep. But He had other plans for me.
    Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you….”. I saw clearly that God was taking this time to speak to me.
    Of course He knew (knows) I have busy days so He got my attention in those wee hours of the morning. I no longer fret when I can’t sleep. This has become my very special & personal time with my Lord & Saviour. There is no one interrupting our time together at that time of day. And I always drift off to sleep. What a wonderful feeling of peace and contentment God blesses me with.
    So when you can’t sleep, don’t count sheep. Talk to your Shepherd.

    Thanks, Lynne, for sharing that Spirit-inspired analogy! I was doing the tossing thing last night (too much on my mind!) … so this will be an excellent passage to reflect on next time round.
    Have a great day, and belated Happy Thanksgiving!

    Amen sister.

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