August 1, 2021
Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year B)
Readings for Today
So they said to him, “Sir, give us this bread always.” Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst.” John 6:34–35
They were hungry, and they wanted Jesus to perform a miracle like He had recently done. They wanted Him to multiply loaves and fishes for the crowds. Perhaps they were curious or perhaps they were hungry. But Jesus directs them to so much more.
This passage begins Jesus’ discourse on the Bread of Life, which will be read at Sunday Mass for the next few weeks. We will see in this discourse Jesus giving His followers so much more than mere bread and fish. We listen to Him speak of Himself as the true Bread from Heaven. Sadly, many reject this precious teaching and gift and go their own way.
But what about you? How often have you truly pondered these words of Jesus? “I am the Bread of Life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst!” Do you believe this?
Deep within every human heart is a hunger and thirst that longs to be satisfied. We all have this longing and desire. We try to fill it with so many things, but in the end only one thing satisfies. Jesus alone can satiate the deepest longings of our souls.
Again, do you believe this? And if you do believe it in your head, do you believe it with your actions? Do you turn to Him as the source of your daily fulfillment and satisfaction? When you go to Mass, do you long to receive Him and love Him and enter into Communion with Him? Perhaps, but perhaps not. Most likely we all need to redirect our desires toward our glorious Savior, especially as He comes to us in the Most Holy Eucharist.
Reflect, today, upon how deeply you believe in these words of Jesus. Do you regularly meet Him in the Eucharist? Do you allow His presence to consume you as you consume Him? If you cannot say “Yes” to this in a complete and definitive way, resolve today to renew your love for our Lord in this glorious Sacrament.
Lord, I do love You, and I desire You to come and consume me as I consume You in the Most Holy Eucharist. Help me to believe in You and Your presence in this Most Holy Sacrament. May Your divine presence meet my deepest need and fulfill my deepest longings in life. Jesus, I trust in You.
Saint of the Day – Saint Alphonsus Maria de Liguori, Bishop and Doctor of the Church
Not celebrated as a liturgical memorial this year since it falls on Sunday