24 Once the crowd realized that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they got into the boats and went to Capernaum in search of Jesus.
25 When they found him on the other side of the lake, they asked him, “Rabbi, when did you get here?”
26 Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, you are looking for me, not because you saw the signs I performed but because you ate the loaves and had your fill. 27 Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him God the Father has placed his seal of approval.”
28 Then they asked him, “What must we do to do the works God requires?”
29 Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”
30 So they asked him, “What sign then will you give that we may see it and believe you? What will you do? 31 Our ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written: ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’[a]”
32 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven. 33 For the bread of God is the bread that comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”
34 “Sir,” they said, “always give us this bread.”
35 Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.
Devotion by Laurie Spencer
The phrase that sticks out to me here is 27 “Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him God the Father has placed his seal of approval.”
There is so much comfort that believing can give us. Traveling through life with the solid knowledge that Jesus walks with us and is leading us to the best place at the end of our time on earth, this should give great comfort to us. And over the years there have been times indeed when I have been swept along on Jesus’ arm through some tough times. And thankfully I have much reason to celebrate the blessings and healings he has bestowed as well.
Yet, I never stop wondering how true the Bible is. I want to know it is absolute. Yet there is so much else out there in the world that speaks to my spiritual center and my sense of right and wrong. My practice of meditation and yoga and the teachings of the contemporary guru, Sadhguru, is an important element of my spirituality. I know other people may also follow goddesses, Buddha, or other great world religions. Is Jesus keen on other religions and ancient practices? No, I don’t think so. I think he considers them ‘food that spoils’.
So when I read passages such as this I feel quite torn. I love Jesus and feel him in my life. I feel a deep connection between my relationship with him and God the Creator of all. But there is more in my heart to love. I can’t turn my back on the other ways that humankind has accessed divine love through the ages.
Jesus, do I love you enough? You’ve created a curious mind, a woman who sees the good in so many philosophies and religions. I can testify of our absolute love for one another, but help me as I struggle to know the truth.