Part of a Balanced Breakfast
The Israelites said to them, “If only we had died by the LORD’S hand in Egypt! There we sat around pots of meat and ate all the food we wanted, but you have brought us out into this desert to starve this entire assembly to death.”
—Exodus 16:3 (NIV)
JOHN EDGERTON | I used to be the kind of person who leapt from bed, poured a cup of black coffee, and charged off to face the day. Breakfast the most important meal of the day? Pshaw! I was burning daylight and the realm of God wasn’t going to usher in itself.
But then came the lockdown months of the pandemic. So much was the same every day. The variables of the equation of my life shrunk down and down and down. With so few variables in play, I noticed something. When I skipped breakfast, or ate something in- substantial, I would run out of steam in mid-morning. Like clockwork, 10:30 would roll around and I would be filled with anxiety, fear, self-doubt, and a variety of other synonyms for existential dread. But days when I ate a good breakfast? I was a better person, a better pastor. All it took was yogurt, grapes, and granola.
The Israelites get a bad rap. Here they are, walking their way into a new world. And they’re supposed to do it on an empty stomach? We are embodied, flesh and blood. To make it through tough times, we need to start with nourishment. I don’t mean this as a metaphor. We must treat our bodies as if they are gifts from God. Because they are.
Eat a good breakfast. Like, today.
PRAYER God of the manna in the wilderness, bless the food we eat that we may live to your service.

About the Writer:
JOHN EDGERTON is Lead Pastor at First United Church of Oak Park, Illinois.

Source: “Running from Empty” | 2023 Lent Devotional by the Stillspeaking Writers’ Group, made up of United Church of Christ ministers and writers who collaborate on resources for people in the church, outside the church, and not sure about the church.