Ministry Updates for Monday, May 4th, 2020

Scripture for Reflection – Ecclesiastes 11:1 (NRSV)


Send out your bread; out upon the waters, after many days you will get it back.

Reflection – Cast Your Bread Upon the Waters

This is a favorite passage of the Bible for me. I prefer the King James version, which begins more poetically ‘cast thy bread upon the waters’. But the antiquated language makes it difficult to follow at times. However, if I ‘mash’ the two versions, we get ‘Cast your bread upon the waters’, which I like a lot.

This passage moves us past the moment of expecting instantaneous reward for my services. Instead, just feed the ducks, and somehow, someday your life will be better.

I want to make the world a better place. Not just for me, but for everyone. This passage delivers a promise: Make the world a better place and guess what? You get to live in the better place. Cast your bread upon the waters, after many days you will get it back.

When I help someone and they appreciate it, it is a wonderful energy boost. But doing the right thing for the right reason does not always pay immediate dividends. Sometimes I ‘cast my bread upon the waters’, and it might take ‘many days’ before I get it back.

As a parent, I know the time lag can be long between the days you care for your children and the days when real appreciation materializes. The difficult decisions, the self-doubt, the effort, the prayer, and the patience required to raise children can be overwhelming. Until I had children of my own, I had no idea about how much went into it. I came to appreciate my own parents much more having walked some steps in their shoes.

‘Cast your bread upon the waters’, is about the ripple effect. It often starts with family, and moves to co-workers, friends, professionals who assist us, church members and neighbors. No matter where you start, if your hope is to make the world a better place not just for yourself, but for everyone, you most certainly can expect to live in the better world. It may take ‘many days’, but it will happen. This is God’s promise to you.


God of the clouds that bring rain, and God of the sun which draws the water back into the clouds, we give you thanks for the cycles of this life. Today, help me do one act of kindness for someone, expecting nothing in return, except to know you will, in time, amplify the good I do. Amen