Jesus called the Twelve together and he gave them power and authority over all demons and to heal sicknesses. He sent them out to proclaim God’s kingdom and to heal the sick. He told them, “Take nothing for the journey—no walking stick, no bag, no bread, no money, not even an extra shirt. – Luke 9:1-11 (CEB)

My wife and I have two kids, which makes preparing and packing for road trips interesting to say the least, there’s always one more thing to pack that may help us on the journey to our destination, or at the destination when we finally get there. (I still hear the echoes of, “Are we there yet?” and, How much longer?”)  Even when we leave the house for school or activity, it seems like we have to go down a list to make sure everyone has everything they need from permission slips and lunchboxes to batbags and cleats.  We are encumbered with stuff.

I think it’s interesting that when Jesus sends the disciples out, he sends them with the clothes on their back and that’s about it.  They have to trust that God will provide.

That has me thinking this morning about how much stuff do I really need?  How much of this stuff is simply clutter for an already busy life?

My family also recently say the remake of the movie The Jungle Book, and they carry forward the song from the original, The Bare Necessities.  Alone, in the jungle, how much would you need, and what are the “bare necessities” of life?

On a deeper level, as Jesus sends the disciples out, they will have to rely on God working through others to provide.  This also has me thinking about how do I provide for the needs of others?  How do we provide for our families, our friends, our neighborhood, our communities, and for others throughout the world?

Maybe these are good questions to ask ourselves on a regular basis.

Prayer:  Lord, you have richly blessed me and my family, and for that I am grateful.  Help me to see the needs of others and use me as a provision for them.  Create in me spirit of generosity.  Lead me to a place where my compassion for others is greater then my fear of future security for myself and my family.  Show me today where I can help others with the bare necessities of life.  Grow my trust in you, that you will provide.  You always have and always will.