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Water and the Word: Massah and Meribah

Quail and manna arrived

for the first time

in the previous chapter;

deep wilderness hunger’s panic

was assuaged

by the divinely directed arrival

of “What is it?”

Now, the angst

of unquenched thirst

bursts on the scene.

Instead of naming the place

“Rock Springs” to commemorate

another divine deliverance,

Moses declares

it shall forever be known

as “Whiney Hiney”

the place where we quarreled

and questioned God’s providence,

if not God’s presence.

In the midst

of our sociocultural abundance,

what would happen

if we opened our eyes

and directed our attention

toward the presence

of the very self

of God in our midst?

Might we change the name

of our present circumstances?

He called the place Massah and Meribah,

because the Israelites quarreled

and tested the Lord, saying,

“Is the Lord among us or not?” (Exodus 17:7)

© 2020 Todd Jenkins



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