Begging for Bread
By Althea Gordon-Scott
When my second son was born, I remember going to the WIC office and they told us we didn’t qualify for WIC. For those of you who are not sure what WIC is, it is a program that provides milk and other nutritious food items for children and their nursing mothers. My husband was the only one working at the time because my going back to work would not be financially prudent. After paying for childcare, it would cost us more for me to go back to work than to stay home with my children. I didn’t know how we were going to make ends meet.
I cried as I walked out of the WIC office.
In this time of great uncertainty, one of the uncertainties that we face is the possibility of losing our jobs and not being able to provide for our families. Many of the cities and municipalities in which we work are laying off people, including educators, because of the pandemic and resulting widespread fiscal crisis.
Students and parents are becoming much savvier with using computers and technology and all sorts of educational programs and we wonder if technology and the increased use in computers for education will replace us soon. As parents become more comfortable with homeschooling their kids, we wonder, will there be less children in our schools and less need for us? We worry if we will have a job next month or next school year. If we lose our jobs, how will we pay our rent, our mortgage, car insurance, buy food, diapers and any number of things that we need in our daily lives? But God promises to take care of us.
“So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (Matthew 6:31-33).
God does not want us to be overly focused on our physical needs to the detriment of our spiritual needs. Of course, he wants us to be astute in taking care of our family’s financial and physical needs but aiming to do so without God’s wisdom is futile. God wants us to go through life putting Him first, before our finances and our physical needs. He created us and knows our needs. He may not provide everything we want but he promised to provide everything we need when we honor Him with our whole heart, mind, soul and strength, that is every fiber of our being. We expel a lot of unnecessary energy overthinking and worrying about the needs we have, often forgetting to do the things that are important to God, loving Him and loving people. When we seek His Kingdom first, above all else, we allow His kingdom to reign in our schools through us.
He doesn’t want us to worry about what we’re going to eat or drink, that’s His job. Our job is to study His word and apply it in our everyday lives.
Though we didn’t get the food supplement from WIC that day, God provided! At times we had to use our credit cards to help us get by, but within a few years my husband’s income increased, and we were able to repay all the credit card debt. Eventually, I went back to work at a higher paying job than I had before, and my pay increased incrementally, year after year. My children have never gone hungry. I have to continue to remember that neither my job nor my husband’s job is what provides for us.
God is our ultimate provider. If somehow, we lose our jobs, we need to trust that He will provide for us some other way. David stated, “…I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging bread” (Psalm 37:25).
Althea is a public-school educator who has taught high school students for over 11 years. Her call is to validate, encourage, empower, and inspire people, especially young people, to find their true identity, live out their purpose, and reach their full potential. In addition to being a public-school educator, Althea is a licensed minister, wife, and mother.