We have a difficult time distinguishing between what is real and what is fantasy. Godzilla, King Kong and Tremors seem like reality on the big screen. Little wonder that so many have doubts about what is said to them.
2,000 years ago people did not enjoy the benefit of movies on the big screen but they were suspicious about the words of Jesus. They argued about how Jesus could possible give them His flesh to eat. Some had seen Jesus raise the dead to life, restore sight to the blind, heal the lepers. Perhaps a minority believed. However, we know that the skeptics dominated. One of the main reasons for which Jesus was hung on the cross was for saying that he and the Father were one. “Blasphemy”, they shouted. Worse possible sin—for someone to make themselves equal to God. Obviously they did not believe that Jesus was the Messiah, that He was the Bread of life. Folks wanted a logical explanation: “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” How can a person who is walking around become bread, become food? After 21 centuries of Christianity we continue to have doubts. We continue to desire logical explanations. We are fascinated by manifestations like blood on a purificator, cloud formations that resemble the face of Christ, a host that resembles human flesh, just to name a few that get our attention. Got to look beyond the bread, the cup that we drink—look beyond—with the eyes of faith.
In a world saturated with lies we have difficulty believing. Lots of betrayal, illusion, false testimony around. Because something is said on television, printed in the newspaper or makes headlines in Facebook, we conclude that it must be true. Yet, when we read the Word of God we remain doubtful. How can we have a world without capital punishment? How can we believe in an imperfect presbyterate? There are no easy answers for profound questions. That’s where faith comes in. Trusting in God’s will is not easy, but possible. He gives the grace.
Perhaps in 100 years no one will remember our name, but God will. That’s the promise. We who eat the Bread of life will never die. Because Jesus is—true food—true drink. Of course death is a scary step—going into the unknown is always scary. In the darkness we see the light. When we die we begin to live. By loosing, we win. Following in the steps of Jesus is filled with contradictions. That is why He went first—So that we wouldn’t have to be afraid. Like when a parent turns on the light in a dark room so the child will be reassured that there are no monsters under the bed, in the closet or behind the curtain. Death has been conquered. Given the great news of salvation we still have the power to choose. We can choose to believe, give our life to the Lord or we can hide in the darkness of sin. The option is always before us. “It’s a no brainer”, folks say. Choose the Bread of Life and live forever. Would be wonderful if people did. Yet, countless refuse the gift, even baptized Catholics. All the more reason for us to get to work. Much remains to be done. We all know people who no longer come to Church or have stopped receiving Holy Communion. We know better. But the Eucharist is not our personal possession, but a Banquet to be shared.
We need to be the best advertisement of the Blessed Sacrament. We can never repay the Lord for His goodness to us. Let our gratitude show when we bring others to the Bread of Life.