On our way home from church we drove over the newly constructed road which crosses over the wetlands of my childhood. It's a lovely road and the land alongside the old irrigation ditch where I used to meet my best friend is planted with native willow trees.
Today whenever we drive over that road I remember the young girl that was me dodging around the wet areas to get to the place beside the irrigation ditch where my best friend Barbara--who lived on the other side of the swamp--met me.
After that the two of us went on together. Sometimes we'd follow a frog through the tall grass, discover a fish lurking in the murky water. And then there were the bugs and spiders, sometimes a bunny or two; once we even saw a beautiful China Rooster take flight into the air.
By the time we arrived at Barbara's house we were famished, so Barbara would fetch us both a piece of bare bread from a bread sack labeled Wonder Bread. Delicious, except that slice of soft white bread didn't satisfy our hunger. It barely held us until supper.
Although I appreciated that slice of bare bread, I couldn't help but compare it to the bread I ate at home. My Mother made loaves out of wheat we ground ourselves. Whole grain, fragrant and fresh from the oven, it nourished our bodies and our spirits.
It was sort of like the bread the Jews ate when Jesus walked the earth. Their bread, made from freshly ground wheat or barley contained an abundance of vitamins and minerals. Bread broken from that loaf would satisfy the hungriest man, woman or child and it gave them everything they needed for life. "The bread that I will give," says our Lord, "is My flesh--My body--which I will give for the life of the world." (Jn 5:51)
Jesus went on to say, "Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me" (Jn 5:57.) It is through His Word we live, for He is the Word of God. This beautiful communion we have with Him only comes through eating the Living Bread--the most wonderful food ever prepared for mankind. Only as we eat and are satisfied are we able to grow to be like Him.