Abide: Prayer and Fasting (Family Devotional)

Day 1 of 7 • This day’s reading


Introduction: The Word is Like Bread


What is the staple food in your home? Staple food is the main food crop that is eaten and the main source of energy in a diet. It sustains us every day. People in different parts of the world have different staple food. 

Here is a list of common staple food around the world:            

  • Corn or maize          

  • Rice          

  • Wheat, which is mostly made into bread and pasta          

  • Root crops, like potatoes and cassava          

  • Soybeans

Do a little investigative work and see the different places in the world where the food on our list is considered as staple food.


Our devotions this week will encourage us to read the word of God. Be excited to discover the meanings behind the interesting symbols used by Jesus to teach us some very important lessons and truths.

Read Deuteronomy 8:1–20.

Remember how the LORD your God led you all the way in the wilderness these forty years, to humble and test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands. He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your ancestors had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD. Deuteronomy 8:2–3 (NIV)

When the Israelites were traveling in the desert for forty years on their way to the Promised Land, they did not go hungry because God sent food that fell from heaven, which they called manna. These were thin flakes like frost and sweet like honey, which they boiled, ground into flour, and made into bread and cakes. That was how God provided food for them. They had more than enough for each day so they never became hungry in the desert.

Yet God also told the Israelites that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD. There is physical bread (like manna) for the body, and there is the bread that is for the spirit. 

Who is this true bread? As we read about Jesus’ life in the book of John in the Bible, we learn that Jesus is the Word of God. He also called Himself the bread of life (John 6:35). 

Every person was created by God with a body and spirit. While our bodies will survive with physical bread, we need Jesus—the bread of life—for our spirits to live. Whoever goes to Jesus will never be hungry, and whoever believes in Him will never be thirsty. 

So when God said, man does not live on bread alone, He did not want the Israelites to focus only on the manna (or the provision), but to trust and obey Him who provides for everything they need.

Just like the Israelites, God is teaching us to depend only on Him. We learn God’s ways through the Bible. It does not only feed, strengthen, encourage, comfort, and satisfy us, but it gives us life!


Parents to Kids

4–6 years old  

  • Do you like to eat? How many days do you think you can live without food? Why do you think we need to eat food?          

  • Tell me what your favorite food is, and I’ll tell you if that is good for your body.

7–12 years old  

  • What is one food you definitely have to eat every day? Why?           

  • What is one thing you cannot get through your day without (e.g., your mobile phone, your camera, your toys)? In reality, this is your “bread,” but is it right? 

Kids to Parents          

  • What is one thing (such as an item or a habit) you cannot live without? Why?          

  • Does the Bible really satisfy us spiritually? How?

Knowing that we do need food for our spirit, let us have Jesus as our bread of life. He is the Word of God and all truth comes from Him. May we be fed not only by natural or physical bread. If we hunger for God and His truth, our lives will be full and satisfied. 

Just as you would eat bread every day to be full, starting today, will you make reading the Bible a daily habit? God’s word has the power to transform us so we can be more like Him. As we pray and fast this week, ask God to open the eyes of your heart to see the truth that God wants to teach you through His word, beyond what is obvious or literal. God’s word will sustain you.


Dear God, Thank You for giving us all that we need—food, our family, a home, and all Your blessings. Most of all, thank You for giving us Jesus, the bread of life who strengthens, comforts, encourages, and sustains us.

Thank You for Your word that guides us. As we continue to know You and love You more, please teach us to understand what is right and what is wrong. Help us to obey the truth and teach us to trust and obey You more. In Jesus’ name, amen.


Which one is your favorite bread?

It’s fascinating to know there are hundreds of kinds of bread that you can make out of simple grains, such as wheat or corn.   

Around the world, you will find the crunchy baguette in France, the unleavened roti in India, the spongy injera in Ethiopia, the thin tortilla in Mexico, and the soft pandesal in the Philippines. 

You can learn more about different types of bread around the world by searching for “the world’s best breads” online. 

From now on, as you chew on your favorite bread, always remember there is nothing else that will satisfy you as much as Jesus would because He is our bread of life and only He can sustain you as you chew on (read and meditate) His word every day. Whoever comes to Him will never hunger or thirst. Be hungry for God’s word!