Readings for August 1, 2021
Exodus 16:2-4, 12-15
Psalm 78:3-4, 23-25, 54
Ephesians 4:17, 20-24
The Israelites grumbled to Moses that they would rather have eaten their fill as slaves than starve in the desert. God heard their cry and gave them manna in the morning and quail in the evening. Eventually, they would grumble about that also. Jesus fed 5000 with a little bit of bread and fish and they were still hungry. The people wanted a sign that he was who he said he was. He said that those who eat from the bread of life and those who believe in him will never thirst. Eventually he would say those who eat from his flesh and drink of his blood would not perish, and they walked away assuming he was crazy.
In truth, I know that I do the same still today. I want more. I want more stuff. I want more money. I want more followers on social media. I want. I want. I want. I am still hungry. Oh sure, I believe in Christ and I cherish the Eucharist as his body and blood. But I’m not satisfied with being fed spiritually. I also want worldly things. I am not in a faith crisis but I might be too comfortable in the world to be wholly focused on my faith. And that is a problem.
If I focused less on my earthly, grumbling tummy, I would understand the gift of food and drink Jesus offers and know with absolute certainty that it was not just enough, but it is everything. It is a radical thing to be satisfied, satiated even, with what Christ offers to us. And it’s hard because the accolades and material possessions and other feasts of the world are so very tempting. But they are not enough. I always want more.
But I don’t need more of the world. I need more Jesus. Jesus preaches over and over again that he wants our whole being, not just a “I believe!” proclamation at a church service. What is offered is forever sustaining. What Jesus offers is salvation. I need him. And only him.
My Lord Jesus, you offer me your very body and blood as food for my soul and as a means for my salvation. May I always seek you first, be satisfied with what you give to me, knowing that my real home is with you, in the Kingdom of God. Amen