Devotional: March 10, 2021
“Don’t waste your energy striving for perishable food like that. Work for the food that sticks with you, food that nourishes your lasting life, food the Son of Man provides. He and what he does are guaranteed by God the Father to last.”
Jesus said, “I am the Bread of Life. The person who aligns with me hungers no more and thirsts no more, ever…”
John 6: 27, 35 The Message
We know that some things are perishable and other things are permanent. As Jesus shares His wisdom with the crowds, He advises them to aim for what is permanent: that which lasts forever. Consequently, he encourages them to look past those things which are temporary. Such things can only satisfy for a moment, or a day, or a season at most.
We don’t know for certain why Jesus felt the need to emphasize this point at this time. It could be however that he was constantly observing people who were investing their lives in the wrong things. He may not have wanted them to waste their time and energy on that which would not sustain them spiritually.
Many in our world hold high the values of fame, fortune, popularity, financial success, and novelty. Yet all of these things can be quite temporary. We also know that one day, they will all crumble. Things change so fast in our society, and in our culture, that if we pin our hopes on something so fleeting, we will almost certainly find ourselves disappointed.
Jesus calls himself the “bread of life”, promising that those who follow Him will not hunger or thirst for anything more. As is often the case in John’s Gospel, Jesus is speaking on one level (a spiritual level), while the people are trying to understand it on a material and physical level.
Jesus is not talking about the basic human need for food in order to sustain our bodies. Not at all! Jesus is speaking about a much deeper, everlasting and spiritually kind of sustenance. Jesus is offering Himself as the spiritual bread which will nourish our eternal life with Him. When we are filled with the grace and love that Jesus offers us, we are spiritually fulfilled. Our hunger is diminished because He has filled that emptiness. Jesus Himself is offering us something everlasting. What Jesus is speaking of is our spiritual hunger: a hunger for meaning, for significance, for understanding, for a connection to the Lord, and for God’s blessing.
Jesus is not vague, nor merely hinting. He is bold in His message, and crystal clear about what will happen when we look to Him, and stop searching elsewhere. When we accept Christ's generous offer, we will have a permanent satisfaction that the world can never offer us. Others may promise us material happiness. Yet these are lies, cloaked to prevent us from the perfect relationship Jesus wants with us. Nothing that the world has to offer will ever even get us close to the peace and contentment Christ offers us. All we need to do is to put our trust in Christ, and dine with Him.
For Jesus IS God, in the same way that He calls Himself “THE bread of life.” Not just some bread, or “a'' bread, but THE bread of life. What Jesus has to offer us is love. As we feast upon His unconditional love for us, we realize that we have found His peace, which is the only thing which will truly satisfy us.
Lord, thank You for caring for every detail of my life. Help me to see the importance of relying upon You to sustain my spiritual needs. Let me not be tempted by the temporary promises which the world holds in front of me. Open my eyes and my heart to the permanent satisfaction You desire to share with me. May I find the peace you offer, and rest in Your promises to me. I pray this prayer in Your holy name. Amen.