What truly sustains us in our journey towards bringing to full fruition equality, liberation, and ultimately, freedom?
In the opening line of Exodus, we are told that the whole Israelite community “grumbled against Moses and Aaron.” This, unfortunately, was not the first time they uttered words of regret for following Moses out of the slavery of Egypt. Before complaining about hunger they complained about thirst (Exodus 5:22-27). In both instances, God, through the faith and dedication of Moses, provided what the people needed.How long has our whole country been in a “desert mindset?”
How long have the oppressive heat and coarse sands of white supremacy caused us to lose true hope that we will enter the Promised Land?
How many times have we clearly been sustained by the saving Grace of God in our schools, churches, non-profits, and even at times our government, only to despair and believe that our work is futile?
Building the Kingdom of God requires a steadfast faith in God’s promised deliverance, not in our own abilities. If we define the fulfillment of God’s plan through the lens of our own human gaze and desire, we will go hungry. When the crowd asked Jesus, “What can we do to accomplish the works of God?” Jesus responded, “This is the work of God, that you believe in the one he sent.”
Even in the hardest and most trying times, our instructions still remain clear. We are to “gather our daily portion” of the Grace that God continually sends to us to do our work and “be renewed in the spirit of our minds.” We no longer have to look to the sky for sustenance, we can find it in our own Hope.
Justin T. White serves as Ignatian ministries associate at Loyola Blakefield in Towson, Maryland.