If you’re following along in the Amazing Race that our church is doing, you’re reading John 6:22-7:53. The story is starting to get a bit crazy as Jesus is moving towards the cross. The crowds are tense, and dividing over what they believe about who Jesus is. The religious leaders keep trying to arrest Him, but can’t. Jesus knows that His time is coming to an end. The tension just keeps building and building.
One of the conversations Jesus has can be found in John 6:26 and following. Jesus feeds the five thousand the fish and bread in a miracle. Then He disappears, and the crowd has to go looking for Him. When they find Him, they want Him to feed them again. It makes sense. Many of them are poor, they are hungry, they’ve left home to find Jesus, they are faithful to Him, and it doesn’t seem to be much work for Him to feed them. He prays, and the food shows up. So why wouldn’t they ask for food?
Jesus goes off on this crazy tangent about how HE is the bread and wine. He tells them that the food they want isn’t what they really want. What they really want is food that lasts forever. They agree. Then He tells them that His skin and blood are the food that lasts forever.
Ok, stop just a minute and think about that. Imagine you are standing there and hear that.
No, really, think about it. Don’t think about communion on a Sunday morning. Think about the fact that you ask Jesus for food, and His answer is for you to eat his skin and blood.
Sometimes God gives us an answer that we don’t want. At least we think we don’t want it. Consider the discussion Jesus is having with his potential disciples. They want to be fed. Full tummies. Temporary happiness. For four or five hours. Jesus wants them to be healed. To live a life of joy, peace, and obedience to what they were hardwired for. Most of the time, when we hear an answer from Jesus that we don’t like, it’s because we are living too short sighted. We are looking at today, He is looking at today, tomorrow, and forever.
Jesus probably hasn’t told you to eat his flesh and blood in a shocking way lately. But what IS He telling you that is hard to hear? What answer is He giving that seems like He isn’t even listening to what you’re asking? Where is He pushing you? Trust Him in it. If He isn’t pushing you right now, then that is what you need to ask for.
What are your thoughts?