John 6: 51-58. 53 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in them. 57 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. 58 This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your ancestors ate manna and died, but whoever feeds on this bread will live forever.”
I want to eat of you dear Jesus. I want to gobble you up as I do a little baby, so soft and sweet. I want to eat you whole, to consume you so that all of you is inside of me. I want to be hidden in you, not separate but one, as you are one with the Father. I see the little host. Bread in the simplest form. Living bread, not mere grain and water, but flesh of your flesh. Sacrificed, for me and for all. The victim, the offering in atonement for my sins. This tiny piece of bread – changed before my eyes yet unchanged in appearance. How is it I believe what you have said? Why do I believe what I cannot see? It looks the same before you came down upon the altar of sacrifice as it does after you enter it. I believe because you told this to the Apostles. You held bread up and told them, this is my body, given up for you. The wine, too; you held this up and said, take, drink, for this is my blood, given up for you.
My small mind cannot understand the how this transubstantiation can occur. But it doesn’t matter; my faith will carry me through. For what is faith but what I cannot see but choose to believe? You said that if I eat your flesh and drink your blood, I will have life everlasting; that you will raise me up on the last day. Yes, Lord, I want to be with you in paradise. I want to eat and drink of you everyday that is possible so that I have the fullness you offer. I want to cooperate with you; giving myself totally over to you, trusting, seeking, listening to your commands and carrying them out without hesitation.
I believe Lord, but help the times of my unbelief. Those times when I shy away from sharing your word with the lukewarm. So many people only see the delights of this world. I, too, often measure my happiness in how I am affected here instead of keeping my eyes on heaven. You proclaimed your flesh as life for the world. I fear so much of this world today is dead to you. They do not believe, do not hope, do not love you. Many do not know you. If I struggle and claim to be following you, so are many others.
Today I listen to my Pastor’s homily. He described perfectly what these last three months of being separated from you have brought me; a greater awareness, an increased desire to not ever be separated from you, surety in knowing all I have and am is because you first loved me. Yes, Lord, those words of eat my flesh and drink my blood may appear to those who do not know you, to be harsh, but to me it is an invitation to eat and drink at the most divine banquet that could ever be set. May I hold you within my body closely, carefully and joyfully so that others will want to be filled with this bread of life only you can give. Thank you doesn’t seem enough to give you for such a gift; please accept my offering of all I am and have to do your will.