Do not work for food that perishes but for the food that endures
for eternal life.
In this bread of life, Jesus offers us the real thing. But why
do I so often pass up his life-giving offer of a hearty meal and
his way of living and instead grab for the "junk food"
that is familiar - the way I always do things, the habits I cling
to? Why do I hold grudges, refuse to forgive or wonder why God doesn't
intervene in the bad things going on in the world?
As I prayed, I realized, that like the disciples at Emmaus, I wasn't recognizing Jesus in all of the situations of my life. He blesses and breaks this bread of life for us, in the two year old's struggle for life, in the sadness of a family crisis or in bad news about the health of someone we love. But the disciples at Emmaus said, "We had hoped it would be different" and so did I. I had somehow hoped that my life would be easier, that the people I love would not have to suffer and that I would not have to come up with the courage to give guidance and support to someone in such pain.
But if I turn back to the table at Emmaus, I can recognize Jesus as he breaks the bread and offers himself, broken and given. He shares this great bread of life with me and asks me to share it, to share myself in his name, with others in my life, especially those who suffer. And I will not be alone in supporting those suffering people - Jesus in his great compassion, reached out to their hearts long before I did.
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