Monday, February 1, 2010

Bread of Heaven

Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst. But I said to you that you have seen me and yet do not believe. All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out. John 6:35-37

Our little parish has been holding a cafe on Saturdays, open at the same time our thrift store is open. Folks from the parish as well as the community stop in to get some soup, a sandwich and a slice of homemade bread. People place orders and take home loaves of bread and containers of soup and chili. Early Saturday mornings, they arrive with the dough and turn up the oven. Once the bread is in the oven, the intoxicating smell is overwhelming and inviting. People who aren't curious otherwise, pop their heads in to see what going on - literally, to see what's cooking. Little tables are set up and people sit around and chat. The atmosphere is relaxed and welcoming. And the smell of the bread is so enticing, folks want to be there, and are reluctant to leave. Bread, so essential to life, and yet so incredibly powerful in the life of a community. Despite the present day health disregard for bread and all forms of carbs, bread is still a powerful life force among people.

Jesus is telling the gathered about his role, his place in the cosmos. He uses bread as the common food, the most reliable currency, and the staff of life. He describes himself as the essential ingredient to a life of faith. And yet he also reminds them that he never rejects those who come to him. He is both life giver and sustain-er, the one who brings and renews life.

Today, I want to be grateful for the life and faith I have. And I want to live, trusting that God will provide for the needs for today. I pray that I can live today completely trusting in a God who is bread and life, a constant source, renewable and unfailing. May we all rest assured in the abundance of God, and share our life and abundance with others.

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