OSE-news, lectionary 19, 2018
In John’s gospel the phrase “I AM” is used seven times by Jesus: “I AM the vine;” “I AM the good shepherd;” “I AM the door;” “I AM the living water;” “I AM the light of the world;” “I AM the resurrection.” This phrase “I AM” is meant to stir a rich memory. Do you remember what God told Moses at the burning bush when Moses asked God his name? “I AM who I AM,” said God. So this weekend our ears perked up when we heard Jesus proclaim: “I AM the living bread which comes down from heaven; whoever eats of this bread will live forever.”
Like bread, Jesus is everywhere. A tortilla in Mexico, a bagel in New York, naan in India, a pretzel in Germany; bread is everywhere. So is Jesus. Jesus is not bound by boundaries, he is for all people. Like bread, Jesus satisfies and strengthens. Bread nourishes and fortifies, especially if eaten regularly. Jesus does the same. Jesus fills us with his presence, provides us with his power, and builds us up for his purpose. When we regularly sit at his table, we find ourselves fed with what we need.
So, are you hungry for Jesus, the living bread that has come down from heaven? Are you craving a meaningful life? Are you starving for acceptance, for love, for a place to belong? Do you desire to be filled with a peace that passes all understanding; a presence that brings purpose; and a power that produces faith? Then come to the table where Word and Sacrament is shared weekly, where all are welcome, and where Jesus, the Bread of Life, offers his life for our life.
A special shout out this week for those engaged in our OSLC Bereavement Ministry as they partner to prepare and serve a reception following memorial and funeral services allowing for families to gather with relatives and friends. If you would like to volunteer or learn more, please contact the church office.
Blessings, Pastor Mark