Eighteenth Sunday of Ordinary Time

Eighteenth Sunday of Ordinary Time

“Bread from heaven.”

This week we are reminded of the way God fed the people of Israel in the desert with manna from heaven. The people of Jesus’ time want a similar miracle from him. However, as we will discover, Jesus himself is the gift of the Father, and believing in him is doing the work that God wants us to do. Perhaps we might allow the Lord to speak to us this week of his desire to give us our daily bread, from the Word, which was made flesh.

As you begin these reflections each day spend a few moments repeating the phrase “Speak Lord, your servant it listening.” Then read the short passage from Sunday’s readings until you have memorised it. Read the questions and give yourself time to deeply consider your response. Once you have reflected for a few minutes, speak to the Lord, as you would to a friend, about what you have reflected upon.

Sunday.

The whole community of the sons of Israel began to complain against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness and said to them, ‘ Why did we not die at the Lord’s hand in the land of Egypt, when we were able to sit down to pans of meat and could eat bread to our heart’s content!’ (Exodus 16:2-3)

  • What do you complain about most?
  • What would your ‘heart’s content’ be?
  • Have you ever felt that God has led you to a bad place?
  • Listen to the Lord who knows what your heart needs.

Monday.

‘I have heard the complaint of the sons of Israel. Say this to them, “Between the two evenings you shall eat meat, and in the morning you shall have bread to your heart’s content. Then you shall know that I, the Lord, am your God. (Exodus 16:12)

  • Reflect some more on what your heart’s content is.
  • When have you learned that the Lord is your God?
  • When have experienced God’s giving you your daily bread?
  • Listen to the Lord your God.

Tuesday. 

He rained down manna for their food, and gave them bread from heaven. Mere men ate the bread of angels. He sent them an abundance of food.  (Psalm 77:24-25)

  • What is ‘manna from heaven’ in your life?
  • When have you known an abundance in your life?
  • What does ‘bread of angels’ mean to you?
  • Listen to the Lord who rains down his love on you.

Wednesday.

Your mind must be renewed by a spiritual revolution so that you can put on the new self that has been created in God’s way, in the goodness and holiness of the truth. (Ephesians 4:23-24)

  • Have you ever experienced a revolution in your life?
  • What needs renewed in your life?
  • Reflect on what your ‘new self’ might be like?
  • Listen to the Lord who is the creator of newness in your life.

Thursday.

‘Do not work for food that cannot last, but work for food that endures to eternal life, the kind of food the Son of Man is offering you, for on him the Father, God himself, has set his seal.’ (John 6:27)

  • How much of your life is spent working for things that do not last?
  • What in your life do you want to ‘endure to eternal life’?
  • Reflect that God has set his seal on you in Confirmation.
  • Listen to what God is offering you today.

Friday

‘What must we do if we are to do the works that God wants?’ Jesus gave them this answer, ‘This is working for God: you must believe in the one he has sent.’ (John 6:28-29)

  • Reflect on what you must do to do what God wants.
  • When have you been aware of not doing what God wants?
  • ‘You must believe’. What is your faith like?
  • Listen to the Lord who gives you his answer.

Saturday

‘For the bread of God is that which comes down from heaven and gives life to the world’. ‘Sir’, they said, ‘Give us that bread always.’ Jesus answered, ‘I am the bread of life. The one who come to me will never be hungry, the one who believes in me will never thirst.’ (John 6:33-35)

  • What gives life in your world?
  • What is your request to the Lord today?
  • Reflect on Jesus as ‘the bread of life’.
  • Listen to the Lord in whom we never hunger or thirst.
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