This past Sunday’s Gospel reading continues with John’s discourse on the Eucharist, and paints a vivid scene for us of what transpired between Jesus and His followers. We see Jesus standing before us, ready to give us Himself, God made flesh, and we turn away, confused. Jesus, almost with outstretched hands, years nothing more than an intimate communion with us, and we toss that aside, “How can He give us His flesh to eat?”
That deepest yearning of your heart Jesus deigns to fill.How many time have we questioned God? When the way was clear, the message plain as day, and we question something? How often we find ourselves lacking in faith. For if we had faith, there would be no need of our questions, no need of our hesitations. St. Paul in his letter to the Ephesians extolls us as much, “Be careful how you live! Not as foolish persons but as wise!” St. Paul knows the benefit of trust in God, but will we?
Trust takes work. It takes very hard work and dedication, each act of trust building up a fortress of fidelity to the Lord. Proverbs tells us that, “Wisdom has built her house”. What will we build? Again, this book warns us against foolishness, but what is that penultimate foolishness?
When you go up to receive the Eucharist, that IS the Body of Christ.“Amen amen I say to you, unless you eat of the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life within you.” Jesus now, through the ages, is reaching out to you. That deepest yearning of your heart He deigns to fill. But what happens if we don’t reach back? Then there will be no life within us. When you go up to receive the Eucharist, that IS the Body of Christ, that is the life eternal Christ wishes to share with you. How more foolish, then, is it to not reach out and take?
Taste and see the goodness of the Lord. Taste, and see. Do not think. Do not hesitate. Do not miss and do not reject. But taste and see. Reach out and enjoy what Christ has in store for you, because, “This is the bread that came down from heaven. Unlike your ancestors who ate and still died, whoever eats this bread will live forever.” This is not mere mana from heaven; this IS Heaven, Heaven in the palm of your hand. Taste and see Heaven’s goodness.
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