Here’s an excerpt…
“Do not labor for food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of man will give to you; for on him has God the Father set his seal.” (John 6:27)
There is no doubt in my mind that if hundred-dollar bills were being given out at Mass, our churches would be packed. Even though we are given a gift far greater than money when we receive the Eucharist, there is something about material goods that is very attractive. God knows that we need money to survive in this life, but it should never be our main focus.
Looking For Food
Jesus had just finished miraculously feeding five thousand people. The bread and fish tasted really good and the crowd wanted more. They pursued him, not because of any spiritual benefits he could provide, but because he gave them something that filled their stomachs.
It’s so easy to get caught up in seeking the gifts instead of the Giver. If we’re not careful, Jesus can become our personal “vending machine”. As a result, we only turn to him when we need something. While he wants us to ask for what we need (material and spiritual), it shouldn’t be our main goal.
Things Don’t Last…Even though he knows it’s a “hard sell”, Jesus reminds us that money, possessions and the things of the world will not satisfy our desire for happiness. Only he can give us what we need. Why do we ignore him and continue to chase after things that won’t last? Probably because worldly “stuff” seems more appealing than what he offers.
Jesus is fully present to us in the Eucharist – body, blood, soul and divinity. That is more valuable than all of the “stuff” in the world. You may not feel it, but it’s still true. Read his words again and let them sink in. We were created to live forever in heaven, not to live a comfortable life on earth.
Give Him A Chance
Don’t take my word for it. Give Jesus a chance to prove that what he said is true. Everything else in your world can change or crumble, but he will always be there. Pay him a visit at the adoration chapel, say some extra prayers, spend time with the Bible or try going to an extra daily Mass or two. See if you feel more peaceful.
By the way, how can you ensure you’re seeking the Giver more than the gifts? You can make sure that some of your prayers begin with praise and thanksgiving, even before you ask for anything. You can also make it a point to thank him when he says “no” to one of your requests or you can pray even when you don’t feel like it.
If you’re doing any of those things on a regular basis, you can be fairly certain that you care more about him than his gifts!