Bread In The Wilderness

Father Carl Diederichs

All Saints Catholic Church

 

 

The readings for this coming Sunday, May 4th are: Acts 2:14, 22-33, 1 Peter 1:17-21 and Luke 24:13-35.

 

In the Acts, we have Peter preaching the Resurrection of Jesus. He says that lawless men crucified Jesus. “But God raised him up, releasing him from the throes of death, because it was impossible for him to be held by it.”

 

And the author of 1 Peter says that you were ransomed from your futile conduct with the precious blood of Christ as of a spotless unblemished lamb.

 

And our Gospel tells the wonderful story of two sad disciples returning home after the crucifixion. Jesus comes to them and walks with them and turns their sadness into joy. And he did this by interpreting for them how all of scripture, beginning with Moses and all the prophets led to this point and to his death and resurrection.

 

Jesus was a dead man walking and they did not recognize him. It was only after he gave them a truly eye-opening scripture lesson and then sat at table with them and broke bread and shared it with them that they came to see who he really was. And then he was gone! But not gone, really. He would remain with them and his Spirit would remain with us too so we can be like him.

 

And what did he teach? I think he told them that things truly had changed and that any remnant of violence was removed from the manner of life that Jesus wants us to live. He could have talked to the two about revenge, a violent “eye for an eye” reaction to the events of the last week of his life. He could have held a deep and lasting grudge against his fellow Jews and the Roman conquerors, but he didn’t.

 

So, when we break bread during our worship service or even in our homes, we should be filled with thoughts of peace and reconciliation; And not only thoughts of peace, but a palpable realization, through faith, that the Prince of Peace lives in us. Jesus was truly the forgiving victim and our lives too must reflect that non-violence, forgiveness and peace which Jesus gave us as a lasting gift.

 

“Fix your minds on the things that are above…because you have died and your life is hid with Christ in God.” Jesus, the Forgiving Victim, touch our hearts and minds with the spirit of forgiveness for all who have hurt us.