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Baskets of Bounty
Photo: Studiomill
I don’t really think much about baskets. Yet I’ve discovered there are more of them sprinkled throughout our home than I first thought. Each time I help with laundry, I carry clothes baskets. Some are wicker and others are plastic. We recently were given a gift bag by a friend from the Philippines. He collected towels and clothing for his friends on this island nation and brought back colorful little ornamental woven baskets as gifts.

Basket weaving happens around the world and the materials used cover a wide range, including plant materials, baleen, horsehair, wood strips, and even wire. It has really become an art when you look at the beautiful containers that are used to carry fish, grain, animals, and babies. Some are used as sieves. Others are used for religious ceremonial purposes.

Making baskets was a major industry in Bible times. The most common materials used were willow, palm fronds, and rush grasses. Baskets were used at home, on trips, and for storage. Moses was placed as a baby in a basket. Paul was let down over the wall in Damascus in a basket when he escaped his persecutors.

Bible Stories

The baskets which come to mind for many of us in the Bible stories are found twice in Jesus’ miraculous feeding of two multitudes. In feeding 5,000 it says, “So they all ate and were filled, and they took up twelve baskets full of the fragments that remained” (Matthew 14:20). When feeding 4,000 it reads, “So they all ate and were filled, and they took up seven large baskets full of the fragments that were left” (Matthew 15:37).

The baskets in these stories remind me that there is plenty when God is involved. Nobody went hungry that day. The Lord gives us our daily bread and then some. Leftovers simply mean we will not go without. I think of this during the holidays when my wife serves us her famous potato rolls wrapped in a large napkin and placed in a wicker basket. The steaming rolls are slathered with butter and jam (or slices of cranberry) and passed around. Everyone loves them.

Each time I see these baskets, I think of the bounty which God provides our family. Do you have any baskets in your home?

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By Curtis Rittenour. Copyright © 2013 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the NEW KING JAMES VERSION 1982.

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