Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Wednesday of the Third Week of Easter

(Acts 8:1b-8; John 6:35-40)

An advertisement for a restaurant read, "Thought for food" and proceeded to promote its own wholesome fare.  Of course, the phrase "thought for food" plays on the more common idiom, "food for thought."  But it also points to the truth of the gospel today.

As Jesus says in another gospel passage, "Humans do not live by bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God."  Today we hear Jesus saying that he is the "bread of life."  He is, of course, more than a thought, but like a thought he comes before the mind's eye calling forth discernment.  Assenting to his real presence, the believer receives life on a different order than physical life.  The life he gives, what may be called divine grace, enables us to form a loving relationship with God and one another.  Because God is eternal, the grace Jesus gives does not wither as physical things but endures for eternity.

We ingest the bread of life in both participating in the Eucharist and in meditating on Scripture.  Actually the two intertwine.  It is in reading the Scripture that prepares us to receive the Body of Christ in the Eucharist.  And it is taking the Eucharist that fills us with hunger to study the Scriptures for a proper sense of its meaning.