What Can You Do?
What Can You Do?
“So they said to Jesus, ‘Sir, give us this bread always.’” – JN 6: 34
As we continue our eight-day Daily Gospel journey in the Bread of Life, Chapter 6, of St John, we hear once again how the people want to know what Jesus can do for them. They have witnessed the feeding of the multitudes and other great works and still are not sure, want more, or just cannot believe this Jesus and His Mission. We have to feel sorry for them. Unlike us, they have not had 2,000 years of recorded history or an established Church to help them understand. Yet even though we have all the resources and knowledge, how many times have we insinuated to Jesus, what can You do?
Jesus very easily could ask us; how do you hunger for the Bread of Life? The Jews had always regarded the manna in the wilderness as the bread of God (Psalm 78:24, Exodus 16:15). There was a strong Rabbinic belief that when the Messiah came, He would give manna from Heaven. This was the supreme work of Moses. Now the Jewish leaders were demanding that Jesus produce manna from Heaven as proof to His claim to be the Messiah. Again, ignorant to a point, they only knew the history of their faith. They are experiencing Jesus for the first time. Jesus responds by telling them that it was not Moses who gave the manna, but God. The manna given to Moses and the people was not the real bread from Heaven, but only a symbol of the bread to come.
Jesus then makes the claim which only God can make, “I am the bread of life.” The bread which Jesus offers is none else than the very life of God. Notice how Jesus uses the words, “I Am”, the name God used to describe Himself for Moses to tell the people who sent Him. This is the True Bread which can truly satisfy the hunger in our hearts. The manna from Heaven prefigured the superabundance of the unique bread of the Eucharist or Lord's Supper. The manna in the wilderness sustained the Israelites on their journey to the Promised Land. It could not produce Eternal Life for the Israelites.
The bread which Jesus offers His disciples sustains us not only on our journey to the Heavenly Paradise, but It also gives us the abundant supernatural life of God which sustains us both now and for all Eternity. When we receive from the Lord's Table, we unite ourselves to Jesus Christ, who makes us sharers in His Body and Blood and partakers of His Divine Life. St. Ignatius of Antioch (35-107 A.D.) calls It the "one bread that provides the medicine of immortality, the antidote for death, and the food that makes us live for ever in Jesus Christ" (Ad Eph. 20,2). This supernatural food is healing for both body and soul and strength for our journey Heavenward. How would any of us answer Jesus if He asked each of us, how do you hunger for the Bread of Life? What can we do to show Jesus how hungry we are for Him? After all, we know what all Jesus has done for us, right?
"Lord Jesus Christ, you are the bread of life. You alone can satisfy the hunger in my heart. May I always find in you, the true bread from heaven, the source of life and nourishment I need to sustain me on my journey to the promised land of heaven."
May God’s Grace and Blessings Always be with you and yours!! Our Lady of Guadalupe – Pray for us!!
Yours in Christ,
St. Clare of Assisi
Fr. Vincent Nguyen
on Tuesday, April 20 at 7:00AM