Word for the day: tranche. Commonly used in reference to money and it pretty much means portion. Tranche is a French word meaning slice. So next Thanksgiving this will be useful in asking for a tranche of pie. Since it’s French, I’m certain it is pronounced more eloquently than ranch with a tr sound to start.
The word portion is most commonly used in a discussion about inheritance or the food on your plate. Restaurants are praised for being generous, an inheritance is thought just through equality.
The food version of portion is difficult to fathom. A quarter cup of nuts is a serving. A tablespoon of peanut butter, a deck of cards is a serving of meat… are you serious. The rib-eye on the grill is three servings, funny how it goes down in one meal. Restaurants serve dishes that are 1,000-1,500 calories, for many, almost a whole days worth of calories. And if you flipped the script and had a restaurant serve you a 700 calorie meal, I can only guess at the response and the yelp review. I hate to say it, but Dallas Willard calls gluttony one of the great unaddressed sins of the American church. It’s not just food either, it’s the consumption for self verses generosity to others. Another blog post.
Portion in the financial world is also a hot topic. Fairness among helping our children, wills, disbursement of assets all are hotbeds of relational turmoil. “Mom always did like you best” becomes the cry from a heart even if unspoken. My parents taught me well to try and keep things as even and fair as possible. But very often the story isn’t that easy.
My reading this morning brought my mind across the idea of portion…
Psalm 16:5 Lord, you alone are my portion and my cup; you make my lot secure.
Psalm 73:26 My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
Psalm 105:11 “To you I will give the land of Canaan as the portion you will inherit.”
Psalm 119:57 [ ח Heth ] You are my portion, Lord; I have promised to obey your words.
Psalm 142:5 I cry to you, Lord; I say, “You are my refuge, my portion in the land of the living.”
A portion is what I need for my meal in this moment to keep my body nourished for 3-4 hours before I eat my next portion. It’s shocking how small of an amount I need to be hungry in 4 hours and it’s a reminder of what is meant when the author writes God is my portion. It reminds me of the Isrealites gathering up enough manna for the day, anymore than that and it will spoil. Your portion is supplied today and you will have a portion tomorrow, do you trust me?
I’m coming to grips with the idea that if God is my portion, then whatever is placed in front of me is enough. I say thanks for my portion in the moment and look forward with hope, that my next portion will be available when I am in need of it. I don’t need more than I need, but a to go box and a full pantry make us feel more secure. There is an unintended result for that though, makes me think of Proverbs 30:8-10
Keep falsehood and lies far from me;
give me neither poverty nor riches,
but give me only my daily bread.
9 Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you
and say, ‘Who is the Lord?’
Or I may become poor and steal,
and so dishonor the name of my God.
God is my portion today, and it will be enough for today. Tomorrow has it’s own daily bread.