This simple phrase, "Give us this day our daily bread," spams the realm of physical needs and enters us into the spiritual needs. I moves us from self sufficient to being dependent totally on God for our needs. It puts our focus on our needs not our most sought after desires.
There are two stories in the Bible about God providing literally the daily bread. First, the Children of Israel as they wondered the wilderness for forty years, every morning He provided Manna for their daily food. They couldn't be lazy and gather more than they needed for that day and save it for the next because it would spoil. The only day that they were allowed to save it over night for the next day, was the day before the Sabbath. Not only did He provide their food daily, He also provide clothing and shoes that didn't wear out. He took care of all of their physical needs.
The second story is when Jesus fed 5000 men plus women and children from just two small fish and five loaves of bread. The crowd had been following Him listening to Him teach and it was lunch time and there wasn't a Mc Donald's in sight. Instead of dispersing the crowd to go get their own food like some of the disciples had suggested, He became a Gracious Dinner Host. Having the disciples seek out what was there He took the young boys lunch, blessed it, broke it and had the disciples pass it out to the crowd. Not only did everyone have enough to eat as though it was a Thanksgiving dinner, there was twelve baskets leftover. One for each disciple to have food for the next day. He saw the need and compassionately met that need and then some. Not only did He meet their physical need but also their spiritual need through His teaching.
He still provides today. When my husband and I first moved to Phoenix, AZ, he was laid off and we were living on unemployment. We would go to the day old bread store and get bread. They had this thing that if you got a red star on your receipt you would get $10 of free off of your purchase. This happened not just once but twice and both times we were looking to get more bread to add up to $10.
Spiritually, He has fed me by, songs, His word, books, friends, blogs and pastors. In my quiet times He has revealed Himself in ways that I never thought was possible. Like the woman at the well His Living Water has refreshed me when I was dry and thirsty, feeling like I had nothing left to go on.
As I think about the feeding of 5,000+, it totally taught the disciples that their ways was not sufficient to meet the need. Even Jesus relied upon God the Father to provide the food and meet the need. We have to move from being self sufficient to trusting in Him to provide our daily needs. When my dad moved out and my mom started her own home daycare, it must hVe been scary for her. Twice we found boxes, big boxes of food on the front door step. She was walking totally by faith in that this is what God wanted her to do. She will tell anyone that she never had a bill that she couldn't pay. It was her dependence on God that got us through that and other hard times.
If you have noticed that I have been talking about our needs and not our desires. That is because Jesus, Himself put the focus on our daily needs. I want a Lexus and have so for years, would it meet my needs? Yes, BUT does the car that I have now meet my needs. Yes, and it isn't a distraction for me. We can want things that would meet our needs but they become a distraction and take our focus off of what God is doing in our lives. We tend to be a lot like the Children of Israel, not being thankful for what God has provided. Looking back to the past and desiring the way things were or looking at what others have and desiring to have that to leads to discontentment. When we are discontent we start to whine and complain about things not being the way we want it. We are no longer seeking God's will but our way. Not His provision but our fanciful desires.
"Our daily bread," brings us to the present, here and now. It gets us focused on what we really need, not on what we want or desire. On God's will not our way.