Sep 27

Are Crumbs Enough?

After a predominantly “toddler-populated” and very long flight home from Israel, I walked into my home here in Charlotte, NC. I found myself welcomed by two sweet pups, who obviously missed me. I could tell because they were SO EXCITED. And one of them even made a little tinkle. (Forgive me I know that sounds so silly, but she did!) Also home was Dylan, sick with a fever home from school. My how reality hits fast. Despite the long flight with little to no sleep, the sick child at home, and the new spot on the carpet needing immediate attention, I am thankful.

You may remember a few weeks ago I posted about how I’d lost my mo-jo. I Became Unconfident As Just Me. I was hoping this trip to Israel would light my fire so to speak. Refresh me. Renew my faith and give me a quench for God and His Word like never before. All that and so much more happened.

Sea of Galilee and Mountains

I want my faith to be like the Canaanite woman in Matthew 15: 21-28. Go ahead and read it all now, then we’ll disect it. (You can just read through the following passage and my notes here,  or you can get out your Bible and notebook and study it with me~ Seriously, I’m studying this as I write this post.)

Begin with verse 21 in Matthew 15.  Leaving that place, Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. Stop. Now before I went to Israel, I would have skimmed this verse, just to get to what I considered to be the meat of the message. But I’ve learned to slow down when reading Scripture.

  • What place did Jesus leave? Gennasaret (Matthew 14:34) Near to the photo taken above.
  • And when it says “withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon,” just what does that mean? Tyre and Sidon were both mentioned in Matthew 11 when Jesus spoke of cities that did not repent. Verse 21: “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes.” Foreshadowing maybe?
  • How far is that? About 35-38 miles (remember no Uber back then, Jesus was on foot!)
  • What is the land like? He had to cross mountains before getting the coast (Tyre). The land of Israel is not typically easy terrain.
  • How long did it take? I don’t know. A few days at least would be my guess.
  • What is the signifigance of these 2 cities? Why here? We see these cities mentioned in Matthew 11 and now if we read on in Matthew 15, we find out there is a woman here who needs Jesus. Let’s read on.

When we continue to read in Matthew 15:21-28, we find that a Canaanite (not Jewish, but a Gentile) woman comes to Jesus, calling him “Lord, Son of David” asking for healing for her demon-posessed daughter. The disciples traveling with Jesus didn’t seem to have much compassion on this woman. They urged Jesus to send her away. They are obviously annoyed by her.

Jesus says to her, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.” (See Verse 24 here for explanation.) Once you read the explanation, you realize how rare this request is and how rare for Jesus to grant it. Basically He’s telling her that she’s not really a part of His mission today.

After Jesus replied to her, she changed instantly, calling Him just “Lord.” She dropped the “Son of David.” Just “Lord.” And she pleads, “Lord, help me!” 

He replied with a response that people of that time would understand. Verse 26~ “It’s not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.” Jews of that time understood the richness of bread. And Gentiles were often referred to as dogs. What this verse is saying is that Jesus came to give the Jews the first opportunity to know Him as Lord. She, as a Gentile, is only receiving the crumbs. And just look at her reply. Oh how I love this.

“Yes, Lord,” she said, “but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.”

This woman understands that crumbs from the Master’s table are enough.

In verse 28, Jesus answered, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour.

She gets it. Unlike so many, she gets it. She’s willing to be considered a dog as long as she could receive God’s blessing for her daughter. She recognizes Him as her Lord.

I want faith like this, but the truth is, sometimes I want more. Ok, a lot of times I want more.

  • “Lord, help me by giving me time to study your Word.” Then I add, “Without interruption. At least an hour every morning.”
  • “Lord, help by giving me a good job to help provide for my family.” Then I add, “And money to get more clothes, furniture and take vacations too.”
  • And just recently, I prayed, “Lord, as I leave Israel, please allow me experience peace, thanksgiving and stay focused on you.” Then I added, “No distractions. No obstacles. No problems. No frustrations.” (hahahahahahaha, that’s pretty funny huh?)

This woman in Matthew 15 was willing to take the crumbs from her Master. Healing for her daughter, no more. She called Him Lord. That’s all.

Something to Think About

When you read Scripture, do you fly through it looking for a blessing or word of encouragement for the day?

Arie, our teacher in Israel, challenged us to read the Bible like a piece of music. Each word is like a note. Imagine if a note was left out or if the wrong note was inserted in your favorite song? It would change the whole tune. Look closely at all the words in the Bible when you read it. Even the ones that don’t seem important.

Maps! People! Studying the land and people of Israel is so helpful in understanding Scripture.

Are crumbs from the Master’s table enough for you?

After studying this passage a bit more, my perspective is different. And I can say despite the screaming toddlers on the plane, lack of sleep, the sick child, and the tinkle on the carpet, I am thankful. Crumbs are enough. More than enough.

 

Melissa

Comments

  1. Charlotte Askew says:

    Melissa, I so needed to read this on this given day. I want more too, much more. Your fire from within is igniting my low burning embers and causes me to want to do more in depth study. Thank you for sharing this knowledge that you learned while in Israel. I never knew the meaning behind the dogs and the crumbs. Makes such perfect sense to me now, bring new meaning to the reading. Thank You.

    • Charlotte,
      Thank you for sharing with me that you needed this today. I can relate to the “low embers” ~ I love that choice of words by the way! I learned so much from Arie about studying scripture. I feel like I’ve done it all wrong up til now! Of course, I know that’s not true, but my eyes have been opened, that’s for sure!

      Thanks for reading my blog today and leaving a comment too!

      Big hugs & Blessings~ Melissa

  2. I have never read these verses in this way and often wondered why they were included! Crumbs are more than enough for me to. Your journey to get your mo-jo back blessed so many of us but I specifically feel has given me great confidence, healing and motivation to keep being the girl Jesus made me to be and stop doubting who that is! So glad to have you back in the states but this journey was a precious gift to you and so many others who just peered in through a small window you left open for us!

    • Melissa C~
      Glory and thanks be to God for giving you confidence, healing, and motivation. If my experience and sharing is any part of that~ thank you Jesus! I concur, you have no reason to doubt who Jesus has made you to be! I love you, who you are, and how you are constantly encouraging others. Your leadership in Bible Study Live and on the OBS team is such a ray of light, straight from the heart of Jesus. Love you!

  3. timley message. Thank you for sharing.

  4. I love this so much! Your post so confirms the thoughts that have been rolling around in my head. Crumbs…simple…enough. I think we so complicate things. I still have much more thinking to do, but your post has certainly added fuel to my fire! Praise God!!! Thank you sweet sister <3

  5. This is too Awesome! …
    Thank You …

  6. Inez Champagne says:

    Thank you Melissa, I needed to hear this and yes the crumbs are enough for me. I am thankful for all that the Lord has given to me. And I am so thankful that He is my Lord and Savior.. God Bless you!

  7. Oh. My.
    Yes, Lord, yes

  8. Melissa, I couldn’t love Arie’s admonition to read scripture as though it’s music. Each note… yes! I am eating that up. I’m eating God’s Word up right alongside you, friend. Yes. I. Am! Thank you for sharing your journey here. I felt your emotions with each writing. I’m praying God grants you your heart’s desires as you start from this new place with this new fire.

  9. I woke up too early today and decided to read. Ur blog was in my inbox. I’m do glad. Sometimes, I look at crumbs as not enough…and why is this person or that person getting way more than crumbs? God always brings me back to His grace is sufficient. Thank you!

  10. Your way of showing us how to read this scripture was wonderful. I want it all, but realize I need to be satisfied with crumbs. Whatever God provides will be enough to sustain me. Thanks for taking us along on your journey.

  11. I have loved traveling through Israel with you Melissa. Your stories and teaching cause me to pause and study some more. I’m hungry for more of the Word. And this is good! Amen.

  12. Joy Pierson says:

    Melissa,
    Thank you for sharing. I started with some of the online bible study a few years ago and I never get tired of how open you are. It inspires me that no matter where we are or who we are, we all need Jesus and the help and encouragement from other fellow Christians.

    I am learning to go deeper into the Bible and learn more than when I first started. Crumbs are more than enough and I never fully understood the reference to dogs until now. I like how you included the links in the message.

    Thank you again for sharing!!

  13. I have a hard time ‘settling’ for crumbs. But when I realize just how life changing those crumbs are I’m so grateful. Thanks for sharing and being vulnerable and honest. Hope your son is feeling better. It’s funny how life doesn’t really stop when we take a break and we get to hop right back on the train when we get home. You are blessed Melissa …and a blessing.

  14. Oh, Melissa, these photos with the posts add so much! I can feel the breeze and smell the water. I hope I am as good as that woman with Jesus. I do ask and am thankful. Also hope you will write a book about this time of yours in Israel, complete with the photos. Arie sounds like a wonderful teacher. xo

  15. Thank you so much for your so needed words of encouragement!!!
    We must of the time want more and are not willing to be thankful for the crumbs seeing them for what they are -the miracle that God does in our hearts -the life He has given us for eternity! The miracle of salvation and the power of His Spirit to guide us and change us into His image.
    So glad you had a great time in Israel. I could only imagine how wonderful and powerful it was.
    God bless you.

  16. Thank you Melissa.. I too am thankful for the crumbs.. but sometimes I want the whole loaf. :) I have been feeling unproductive. Floating out there… content to float. Don’t get me wrong… I love my Lord with all my heart… but I want more. I wonder sometimes if the amount of time I spend with Him in the morning … at least an hour… is quality time. Am I trying to put too much in … 3 different scripture readings… two different devotional thoughts… prayer… but not enough… at least this is how I am feeling. I think I should just thank Him for the desire to spend time with HIm. Sorry this seems so jumbled… But I want more.

  17. Thank you for this fresh insight into God’s Word!! I LOVE receiving teaching from you, Melissa. I can just sense the fullness in your heart and the new spirit of wisdom and knowledge and revelation the Lord has planted within you. Can’t wait for more!

    Love you,

    me

  18. Melissa, you may remember me. I wrote you once about what OBS has meant to me over the years since being mostly homebound due to being sole caregiver to my husband for many years. Anyway, I can’t tell you how much I desperately wanted to go on this trip even before it was announced. I saw Lysa Terkuerst drop a hint after her return from the Holy Land the first time and I just knew she was planning it and I knew I had to go! I inquired about it. I got all the details. I prayed about it a lot. I begged God for a miracle to allow it to happen. I marked it on the calendar. I saved money, I got my passport, I tried to rearrange things in my life just in case..all the while knowing that my particular life circumstances most likely wouldn’t allow it. The deadline to join came and went and still I prayed and hoped and dreamt about it. On the day the trip was supposed to leave I was excited for ya’ll, but quietly and secretly grieved for me. I didn’t dare tell any of my friends. I thought they would think it so silly, maybe even selfish or worse..pitiful. But I was sad. I looked for posts and pictures on blogs to get any morsel of what ya’ll were experiencing..what I wanted so much to be experiencing for myself. And then your post today…and wow…I needed this. I mean really needed this. I’m on my knees and so grateful for the crumbs. His crumbs are enough. #humbled #yourwordsarecrumbs #Illtakethecrumbs #Godisgood

    • Judy,
      What a blessing you are! Keep dreaming! Just because this trip didn’t work out doesn’t mean there’s not a trip for you in the future! I’m so glad that this post brought you what you needed, to be grateful for the crumbs. I know I needed this passage of scripture too.

      Thanks for being so honest and sharing your heart with me! Have a great day :)

  19. Great post! I enjoyed this very much. I hope you will do more of these.

  20. Thank you Melissa, I have loved hearing about your trip, it has blessed me and given me lots to think about…..will look for more.? God bless you.