What satisfies your hunger?
18 April 2018
I’m not convinced that I really know what it is like to be hungry, but, as someone recently diagnosed as gluten-intolerant, I know a lot about bread that doesn’t satisfy! Maybe it’s just about what you get used to, but I haven’t yet found a type of gluten-free bread that satisfies me like the real thing!
This experience has given me a new perspective on what Jesus is getting at in today’s Gospel. Ultimately, He is the only one that can really satisfy us. If I look deeply and honestly at my experience of life, I can see that everything else that I have sought satisfaction in has failed me: comfort, pleasure, food, power, money, friends, family, myself… But Jesus is utterly trustworthy, completely capable, and totally willing to love me and care for me forever.
That Jesus can and does satisfy our every need is the universal experience of the Church down through the ages. It’s the essence of the Good News. It is the truth that the Samaritans in the first reading “unanimously welcomed”. Its final proof is in the resurrection.
I know this, and yet I still find myself turning to those other, unsatisfactory, sources of “bread” for the comfort, security and help that we are seeking. Why, knowing the truth, do I still buy the lie that Adam and Eve bought, that something else can fill me better than God can? What is holding me back from responding in every part of my life to Jesus’ invitation to come to Him and have all of my hunger and thirst met?
Whatever my answers to these questions may turn out to be, Jesus’ invitation is simple: believe and come! Believe that He satisfies, that He can deal with everything in my life! And come! Come to Him, just as I am!