The work of God is this, to believe in the one he has sent.
Then they ask for a sign and tell of a sign given in the past to their ancestors; manna. What sign will you give?
So, shortly after he has multiplied bread and fish for their hungry bellies, Jesus introduces them to the bread of life, himself.
At first they seem to be right with him, “always give us this bread.”
Oh, how I remember the first time I heard the words of Jesus and believed. Water for my thirsty soul!
I just could not get enough. I seemed to be right with him.
But then we come to this week’s readings and they are ringing in my ears:
After many battles and wavering commitments, there is a need to renew a Covenant. The tribes of Israel are gathered and asked to choose whom they will serve.
And in Ephesians we read about the very real struggle with spiritual forces of evil, rulers and powers and the need for the armor of God .
Finally, in John, “many of his disciples said, This is a hard teaching”
I remember very distinctly the day I considered turning back. It had been so much harder than I could have imagined. I had so much I needed to learn.
But did I still believe?
When God asked me if I would still serve him, my answer was not a roaring yes. Yet, as impossible as it seemed to go on, it was even more impossible to turn away from the very one who gave me life. He met me right where I was, and a Covenant was renewed and here I am.
And all I can think is that we have the very words of life for a world around us that is hungering and thirsting after God, and they don’t even know it. They haven’t even had the chance to begin this journey yet.
It won’t be easy.
But he has given us all that we need.
“Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in them.”