Grumbling or Gratitude

Open

Have a group member read Exodus 16 aloud. Then have another group member read Exodus 17 aloud. With longer passages like these, consider assigning several group members each a paragraph to read. It invites more group members to participate and helps keep attention when there is a lot of text.

What is the hungriest you’ve ever been? How did it affect the way you interacted with those around you?

Reflect

What internal and external enemies do the Israelites face in these two chapters? List as many as you can think of. Which do you think is the most dangerous or difficult to overcome? Why do you think so?

In Exodus 16-17, God provides food, water and safety for His children. Why do you think He continues to provide for them, even though they continue to doubt Him? What does this teach us about God’s commitment to His people?

In His provision, God also allows the Israelites to play a role in their own deliverance. Give examples from the text that illustrate this partnership.

Apply

How has lack of a physical or spiritual need tempted you to grumble? What spiritual discipline or attribute of God is an effective antidote for grumbling?
How has God met your physical and/or spiritual needs through a combination of divine grace and personal effort?

Close

What attribute of God did you see in this week’s passage that particularly struck you? How should it change the way you pray, think, speak or act this week?

Ideas for Family Discipleship

Time

Set aside time this week for your family to sit down and read Exodus 16-17. Summarize the main points and answer these questions together.

// What are some things that you are grateful for?

// Do you ever have trouble with complaining? Do you ever take God’s blessings or provision for granted? Share times when you have.

// Have you ever seen the Lord provide for your family when it seemed like you had nothing or when circumstances seemed hopeless?

// How could God use your family to help others through giving of your time, talent and possessions?

Moments

Look for opportunities in the course of your week to point out how God has provided for your family. Leverage every chance you get this week to help others. Find a way to serve the poor, orphans or foreigners in your city. Point out how God is generous—God gives what is best—and He is a provider—God meets the needs of His children.

Milestones

In Exodus 16:33, the Israelites put aside a jar of manna as a keepsake so that future generations would see the Lord’s provision. Is there anything you have that could serve as a symbol of the Lord’s provision and be passed down generation to generation?