The Food that Perishes
This is Day 14 of my 40 day Lenten Blog.
"Do not labor for the food which perishes but for the food which endures to eternal life." John 6:27.
How often do I labor for food that perishes? Back in the time of Jesus many Jews worked all day just to have enough money to buy that evening's food. Today, while we certainly work to put literal food on the table, we work for other figuratively perishable food, too. We work to buy entertainment, cars, phones, computers, vacations, and on and on. We work to keep our yards beautiful and our bodies fit. We work on our art, our music, our poetry, or our golf game. We work to make others like us and to be pleasing to the world. In other words we work so hard on the material.
All of that is perishable. None of it will last and none of it is fulfilling. The food that endures to eternal life is Christ Himself, "the bread of life." (John 6:35). Christ is the "living bread which came down from heaven; if any one eats of this bread he will live forever." And the bread He gives the world is His flesh. (John 6:51).
We are to eat the bread of life both figuratively and literally. We literally eat the bread of life at the Mass when we consume Christ's flesh in the Eucharist. We figuratively eat the bread of life when we "believe in him whom [God] has sent." John 6:29. These two work together to feed us and give us eternal life. We both need to believe in Christ, and consume His flesh to have life in us.
Yet, I spend much more time laboring for perishable bread (both figurative and literal). How many hours a day/week do I spend on the perishable foods vs. the food which endures to eternal life? We need to eat and feed our families, but we also need to feed our souls. I will die one day. At that point none of the perishable food will matter. But the bread of life will matter greatly. The bread of life will be all that matters then.
R.C. VanLandingham is the author of the Peter Puckett series, a Christian children's fantasy that explores what it means to know and love Christ through exciting adventures. His books and blog can be found at rcvanlandingham.com.