Saturday, November 5, 2011

Fasting or Feasting? Bread for the Journey

Have you ever read a story or maybe watched a movie that sticks with you for a long, long time? Then maybe at some point you decide to re-read it or watch the movie all over again for a second or third or fourth time of pleasure? Well, that’s what I did, but as I read this time something I overlooked before illuminated in a delightful way. Want to know what it was? I read 1 Samuel 10:1-9, but here’s what happened leading up to it:

Saul had been wandering through the land looking for his father’s lost donkeys. The provisions he started out with were now gone. His search left him empty handed, both for lack of life sustaining bread and his search for the donkeys was unsuccessful. The servant traveling with him suggested they seek answers from a man of God who resided nearby. Interestingly, Saul found much more than he expected when he was anointed to be king over the people. The man of God, Samuel, told Saul what would happen as he left. Here’s the part I read that seemed to burst with new meaning:

     They will greet you and offer you two loaves of bread, which you will accept from them … The Spirit of the Lord will come upon you in power, and you will prophesy with them; and you will be changed into a different person. 1 Samuel 10:4, 6 NIV

Bread represents life, a life sustaining staple. Physically our bodies must be sustained with bread or food. So, too, must our mind, motivation and most inner being find bread for nourishment. Consider this:

     Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” Matthew 4:4 NIV

     Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth, it is not Moses who has given you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” Sir,” they said, “from now on give us this bread.” Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty…” John 6:32-35 NIV

     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. This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your forefathers ate manna and died, but he who feeds on this bread will live forever.” –Jesus John 6:57-58 NIV

Notice a theme yet? We can eat bread for our physical body which will eventually fade away and die. But what about our inner man, deep down inside where excitement, happiness and pleasure either dwindle or thrive? Deep in our soul is where Jesus wants to reach us and fill us with life. Reading about him and choosing to live by his words found in the Holy Bible is like bread to satisfy our souls.

So what does this have to do with Saul accepting bread that was offered on his journey? Simply this, as you journey through this life, bread for your soul is offered along the way. Will you accept it? Will you accept Jesus, taking His word, reading and devouring it so your soul will be sustained, nourished and flourish? The choice is yours.

If you do not know Jesus, start reading about him in the Holy Bible beginning with the book of John. Romans 10:9 explains what you need to do. If you have known Him but traveled away, reacquaint yourself with Him. His word offers fresh bread for weary sou
ls. Will you accept His invitation to dine?

Many Blessings …
Tanja Dufrene

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