REFLECTION CAPSULES – May 04, 2022: Wednesday

“Allowing Jesus, the Bread of Life, to always be the source, strength and summit of our Christian living!”
(Based on Acts 8:1-8 and Jn 6:35-40 – Wednesday of the 3rd Week in Easter)

One of the simplest moral stories that all of us have heard is that of the thirsty crow.

One hot day, a thirsty crow flew all over, looking for water.

For a long time, he could not find any.
He felt weak, and lost all hope.

Suddenly, he saw a water jug below the tree. He flew straight down, and was delighted to see some water inside it!

Sadly, he found that the neck of the jug was too narrow and it was impossible for him to access the water.

He tried to push the jug to tilt, for the water to flow out but the jug was too heavy.

The crow thought hard for a while.

Then looking around it, he saw some pebbles and an idea struck him.

He started picking up the pebbles one by one, dropping each into the jug.

As more and more pebbles filled the jug, the water level kept rising.

Soon it was high enough for the crow to drink.

His plan had worked…
His thirst had been quenched!

The moral of this story is to “Think and work hard, you may find solution to any problem.”

But when we consider this story from another perspective, we notice that it also shows the deep craving inside every creature, to satisfy one’s thirst.

One is restless till this thirst is fulfilled…
One is impatient till this craving is satisfied…

This agitated thirst is also innate in every human being…
… a thirst for the Divine, for the Transcendental.

And this thirst, compels humans…
… to search… to seek…
… for the source of satisfaction
… for the fountain of fulfilment

But how wonderful it would be to be knowing and to be convinced that this “thirst” can find its fulfilment only in God.

And how wonderful it would be, if all human beings could be properly guided and correctly directed on this path of finding true contentment.

The Gospel of the Day presents Jesus promising this fulfilment and contentment to all those who come to Him and believe in Him – the Bread of Life.

Jesus declares, “I am the Bread of Life; He who comes to me shall not hunger and he who believes in me shall never thirst” (Jn 6: 35)

The crowds who had been fed by Jesus, by the miracle of the multiplication of loaves, came in search of Jesus… probably expecting more…

They wanted still more… and they express this to Jesus, “Sir, give us this bread always” (Jn 6:34)

In John Chapter 4, we read the story of the Samaritan woman, by the well of Jacob, who had also expressed a similar desire.

She said to Jesus “Sir, give me this water, so that I may not be thirsty or have to keep coming here to draw water” (Jn 4: 15)

This desire to receive bread or water, so that one may not hunger again or be thirsty again, is the innate desire and longing within each human being…

Each of us, deep within, are thirsty and hungry…
… wanting to drink water and eat food that will quench the longing, forever.

It is this search that makes people to go out and seek the various sources of satisfaction.

Some feel to have found this fulfilment…
… through worldly pleasures and bad habits like smoking, drinking, obsession with sex, drugs etc, which only lead to momentary external satisfaction and short-lived bursts of thrill.

Some feel to have found this fulfilment…
… in the various philosophies, new-age patterns of life and naturalistic means of spirituality etc, which may have traces of truth, but fail to provide authentic and fullness of life.

The Book of the Acts of the Apostles records one such notable example of Saul.

Saul (who is also called Paul) failed to understand and grasp “The Truth” and persecuted all those who followed “The Way!”

“But Saul was ravaging the church by entering house after house; dragging off both men and women, he committed them to prison.” (Acts 8:3)

But Jesus, today, boldly and unambiguously declares that it’s only in HIM that true and complete fulfilment of life can be found: “He who comes to me shall not hunger and he who believes in me shall never thirst” (Jn 6: 35)

Are we convinced of this fact, that it’s only in Jesus, that I can achieve true and complete happiness…?

Like the Prodigal Son (Lk 15:11-32), we may have strayed away from this path of truth, to seek our own means and ways to find happiness and satisfaction.

But the Lord, today, calls us back to Him…
… to His Heart
… to His Church
… to His Eucharist
… to experience Him fully.

To those who have strayed…
… the call of the Gospel, is to come back to the paths of truth

To those who are holding on to Him…
… the call of the Gospel, is to deepen the conviction, that in Him alone, can the hunger of my soul and the thirst of my heart be fulfilled.

To those who have strayed…
… the Lord invites to build the virtues of humility, docility and openness to the Spirit.

To those who are holding on to Him…
… the Lord invites to build the virtues of patience, firm trust and a passionate longing.

May Jesus, the Bread of Life, always be the source, strength and summit of our Christian living!

God Bless! Live Jesus!

Discovering the beauty of the Catholic Church through the Catechism

The Holy Spirit gives a spiritual understanding of the Word of God to those who read or hear it, according to the dispositions of their hearts.
By means of the words, actions, and symbols that form the structure of a celebration, the Spirit puts both the faithful and the ministers into a living relationship with Christ, the Word and Image of the Father, so that they can live out the meaning of what they hear, contemplate, and do in the celebration.
“By the saving word of God, faith… is nourished in the hearts of believers. By this faith then the congregation of the faithful begins and grows.”
The proclamation does not stop with a teaching; it elicits the response of faith as consent and commitment, directed at the covenant between God and his people.
Once again it is the Holy Spirit who gives the grace of faith, strengthens it and makes it grow in the community.

The liturgical assembly is first of all a communion in faith. (CCC #1101-1102)

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