Wednesday, December 1, 2010


I got a new kindle a few weeks ago. I've been busy filling it with books that I plan to read/hope to read/possibly might read/will probably never find time to read…but hey, they were free! There are a lot of free books in the kindle store….. some hokey and in the public domain (but formatted for kindle) and others regular books that, for a short time, are free. Perhaps not hot of the press bestsellers...and perhaps not books I would consider paying full price for....but interesting books from fairly well known authors that you would expect to see on the shelves at the Christian bookstore. I downloaded Gary Smalley and The DNA of Relationships, and Great Parents, Lousy Lovers for….zilch…nada. 

It’s also amazingly easy to send docs from my computer to the kindle. And another of the features I love about this new kindle is the text to speech function. It “reads” the book to you. Yes, it is a computer animated voice....and no, it is not comparable to the quality of an audio book...but you know, it's not bad. And he (or she, if you choose the female voice) reads to you while you walk.

The other day I listened to several chapters from a book called "The Land Between" by Jeff Manion..."Finding God in Difficult Transitions." He uses the Biblical story of the children of Israel....their Exodus from Egypt and their wanderings around the desert....and finally…their arrival in the Land of Milk and Honey four decades later. The desert years are what he refers to as the "land between."

And, he says, we all have our own "land between" experiences to live through. Sometimes these experiences come on the frog that starts out in the pot of tepid water....only to realize a while later he is boiling. Other times we find ourselves transported to the "land between" in an instant....from an "everything is okay" frame of mind to a worst case scenario moment.

In one of the chapters I "read" while hoofing it around the park, he talked about the manna God provided for the children of Israel. Manna for breakfast....manna for lunch....manna for dinner. And on the menu the next day and the day after that....and the day after that for forty long years....manna, manna and more manna.

They didn’t see it as the blessing it was intended to be. It was provision from God...but they grew weary of it. And not only that....they really didn't even know what it was. The Hebrew word manna means "what is this." Perhaps they didn’t know exactly what it was but they knew for sure they were sick of it. They grumbled and complained....yearning for the flesh pots of Egypt.

I happened upon an article that had this to say…

God did not give them manna to satisfy their longing for taste, pleasure, and adventure, nor did he give it in an abundance to give them the security of knowing they would not starve. He gave them manna day-by-day to sustain their existence. But he did not intend to delight them; only to keep them from starving. In Praise of Manna by Jack Crabtree.

Hmmmm. Sounds like the situation many of us face every day….at our place of employment. Many…most? have that ssdd (same shit/different day) aspect to them. It pays the bills but there is certainly no delight….just another day of “bland, uninteresting, tedious manna.” We grow weary of the same old/same old duties, responsibilities and obligations that drag on and on in perpetual tedium. Or as Drew Carey so eloquently put it….

Oh, you hate your job? Why didn't you say so? There's a support group for that. It's called everybody, and they meet at the bar.

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