The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day. In this way I will test them and see whether they will follow my instructions. (Ex. 16:4)

WHEN WE SENSE A LACK IN OUR LIVES, what’s the most natural thing to do? For my part, and those I’ve observed, it’s to complain, be fearful, and blame. And what is the choice humans are least likely to make? Turn to God and tell Him.

The nation of Israel had, by this time, left Egypt in dramatic circumstances, witnessed God’s rescue of them beside the Red Sea, and most recently found ample water at the oasis of Elim. It had only been six weeks, but they were sure God’s chosen leader would cause them to starve in the wilderness. “If only we had died by the Lord’s hand in the land of Egypt . . . but you have brought us out into this desert to starve the entire assembly to death.”

But God had another plan. He always does. He would miraculously “rain down bread from heaven” for His chosen people. The condition of their survival, like ours, depended on exercising their faith day by day. The test was can God be trusted? Will He provide and show us the way?

I’ve walked through my share of wildernesses over the years and have done a fair amount of grumbling. How about you? It’s only natural, but not necessary. There truly is another way.

Exercise faith day by day.

Beth Weikel is the author of the upcoming Hope in the Midst of Loss (May 2015; WPH) about the challenges and suffering of grief.