Day 30: Bread of Life

Well, it has happened again.  I knew it would only be a matter of time before I stumbled upon another obsession.  Something else that has the potential to become an idol in my life.

This time the culprit is bread.  Yes, that is right.  Bread.

A few weeks ago, I was at a home school event with my children.  We met a wonderful family and ended up spending the whole day together.  At lunch time, she pulled out this amazing looking loaf of bread that was obviously homemade.  The peanut butter and jelly sandwich she gave me was the best that I have ever had.  Why?  The bread.  It was amazing and I keep thinking about it.

After further inquiry, I learned that not only did she bake the bread, but she ground the flour herself, as well.  So I have been spending lots of time researching bread and wheat and flour and the nutritional benefits of grinding it yourself. 

I see a grain mill coming into this house in the very near future.  And several 50 lb bags of grain.  Can I just mention how thankful I am that my husband just kinda goes along with my endeavor of the moment?

So what does all of this have to do with God?  Well, everything.  Bread was a primary staple in the ancient world.  It was made from a variety of grains and provided the needed nourishment to sustain life in a difficult environment.

It was so important, that it also figured into various aspects of worship.  The bread of the Presence, consisting of twelve loaves of unleavened bread, symbolized the covenant between God and his people.  Displayed in the temple sanctuary, it served as a constant reminder to the priests and the people that it was God who sustained His people.

When the Israelites were wandering in the desert for forty years, God rained down manna from heaven every morning.  He provided just what they needed for that day.  No more, no less.

God provides for us much in the same way today.  He gives us what we need to get through each day, each moment.  He will be faithful to keep his promise to sustain us both physically and spiritually. 

Yeshua, or Jesus, told his disciples that He was the bread of life.  He said that he was the living bread who came down from heaven and that whoever eats from it will live forever.

“I am the bread of life.  Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert and died.  This is the bread that comes from heaven so that whoever eats it won’t die.  I am the living bread that came from heaven.  Whoever eats this bread will live forever.  The bread I will give to bring life to the world is my flesh.”  John 6:48-51

Several years ago I tried the popular Atkins diet.  Yes, I lost weight, but at a very high cost.  I was tired, cranky and had absolutely no energy to get through my day. 

When I look back at the times in my life where I have neglected spending time with Jesus, a sort of spiritual Atkins, the outcome was very much the same.  My soul felt empty and I lacked the motivation to fulfill the tasks that God has required of me. 

Lord, please help us remember that just as we need carbohydrates to feed our physical bodies, we also need The Bread of Life, Jesus, to nourish our spiritual bodies.

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