Living through a global pandemic is something few of us will forget. Lockdowns in Sydney have prompted a range of responses and actions, some of which are helpful and others less so. It seems to me that one of our first responses is to check if we have everything we need. In these times, groceries, toilet paper, hand sanitiser, masks, and home office supplies have all been in high demand! But sometimes it can be hard to determine what we truly need, and we end up looking in the wrong places. Checking we have what we need is a prime concern when times are tough and understandably so.
This year I have the privilege of teaching a Year 12 Biblical Studies class. We recently focused on John Chapter 6:25-59 which follows Jesus’ miracle of feeding the five thousand. From a small amount of food, Jesus had provided enough food for thousands of people to eat all they could. When the people were finished eating there was more food left over than what they had started with. The next day, some of the same people sought out Jesus and were asking him for more food. Perhaps they thought Jesus would give them another miracle meal or that he would do something even more amazing. Jesus challenges them to consider what they really need and what will truly satisfy. In John 6 verse 35 Jesus declares, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” The people came to Jesus wanting bread, but Jesus tells them “I AM the bread”. Jesus makes it clear that He is speaking of spiritual bread rather than literal bread. Jesus was talking about food for the soul.
As a community, we persevere to do the best we can to navigate this COVID era. It can be difficult to feel like life is on hold, wondering when “normal” will return. This can be especially difficult for our young people. When God has created us as relational beings, the emotional cost of isolation can take its toll and leave our souls troubled. These troubles are real and should not be disregarded. In facing these challenges, it can only be a blessing for us to keep returning to Jesus’ promise, “I am the bread of life.”
Feasting on the bread of life helps us to rest knowing God’s great plan for our lives. Knowing the bread of life satisfies us with everything we need for our salvation is the good news that never changes. Every blessing is in Him. He is the satisfaction of our souls that we need now and always.