עֵינֵי כֹל אֵלֶיךָ יְשַׂבֵּרוּ; וְאַתָּה נוֹתֵן לָהֶם אֶת אָכְלָם בְּעִתּוֹ ; פּוֹתֵחַ אֶת יָדֶךָ וּמַשְׂבִּיעַ לְכָל חַי רָצוֹן
“The eyes of all wait for you, and you give them their bread in its time; O open Your hand, and satisfy every living thing with your favor”
This psalm is in our daily prayers, twice. As I was walking today, doing my ‘standing prayers’ as Yeshua instructed in Matti 6, I pondered these verses for various reasons. First, I was in the tunnels under downtown Houston, as it is cold and wet today. It’s lunchtime, and there are many restaurants in the tunnels, and they were crowded, also due to the weather, I’m sure. The aroma of various foods was wafting out of the restaurants into the walkways. I was contemplating the shear abundance of food there is to be had.
We are coming up on ‘Thanksgiving’ this week. In Hebrew, ‘we give thanks’/”give thanks” [in the imperative plural] is “Hodu!” And also in Hebrew, the word for “turkey” is ‘hodu’, where only the stressed syllable varies. Maybe that is why the matter of His abundant provision and compassion toward us all is particularly on my mind this week.
There are many, many times, however, when this crosses my mind. As I’ve stated recently, the ‘khesed’ of the Creator, His manifold lovingkindness, His compassion, is becoming more and more apparent and obvious to me, in spite of the abundant cruelty this world has to offer, and the pure distortion of His Truth most people follow.
But, I could not help again but to revel in His provision for mankind, and be profuse in thanking Him for me and mine, and our congregants. It cannot be an ‘accident’ or mere happenstance that on this globe that we inhabit there are resources enough to feed, house, and clothe in abundance all the billions that occupy its surface. And beyond that, there are resources abounding that provide shelter, tools, and even unnecessary finery, beyond our comprehension. Every person I saw, including the homeless, were clothed, in layers. Those of us working down here wandering the tunnels, most of whom were destined for some vendor to purchase lunch, have not only clothing and shoes and coats, but accessories, and jewelry, and cell phones… things that do not sustain our lives, but only enhance them. They are not necessary. And there were even all these same wares lying on shelves down there waiting to be purchased.
And I think sometimes we do not appreciate it; and I think most are not aware that ALL of these things are given us by the compassion of our Creator.
In the Hebrew language, the concept of ownership or possession cannot be literally expressed the same way it is in English, when we say things like “My cell phone,” or “I have a car.” In Hebrew those come out this way, “The cell phone which is to me,” or “There is for me a car”. Ancient Jews understood that HE is the provider of ALL that we have, including the air we breathe. But, also the finery with which we lavish ourselves. “But you shall remember יהוה your Elohim, for it is HE who gives you the power to get wealth.”
He wants us to enjoy life, and He wants His people to be lavished with things: “It is יהוה who fills a house with good things.” But, when He does that, He wants to be remembered. And He wants His people to be grateful.
If you eat Turkey this week, remember, in Hebrew, you are literally eating your words. “Give Thanks!
“Hodu la’ יהוה ki tov, ki l’olam khasdo.” Give thanks unto יהוה for He is GOOD, for His compassion endures for eternity.”