I read a story recently about orphans of WWII.

“During the bombing raids of WWII, thousands of children were orphaned and left to starve.  The fortunate ones were rescued and placed in refugee camps where they received food and good care.  But many of these children who had lost so much could not sleep at night.  They feared waking up to find themselves once again homeless and without food.  Nothing seemed to reassure them.  Finally, someone hit upon the idea of giving each child a piece of bread to hold at bedtime.  Holding their bread, these children could finally sleep in peace.  All through the night the bread reminded them, “Today I ate and I will eat again tomorrow.”  (From the book “Sleeping with Bread” by Dennis Linn, Sheila Fabricant Linn, and Matthew Linn, Paulist Press)

We all feel that way at times, don’t we?   Sometimes we need something to comfort us, something to hold onto.  I’ve felt that way many times in my life.  Most recently was on Friday night as I watched the horrific terrorist attacks taking place in Paris.  The attacks reminded me of when 9/11 happened here in the United States. It felt like the world was spinning out of control and I feared what would happen next.  I feared for the lives of our sons who were just 6 years old and 11 months old at the time. How could I go to sleep not knowing what would happen in the night? Would there be more attacks?  Would we be safe?  I needed comfort and something to hold onto.

We all have times of struggles, fear, worry, and loss.  In those times, like the orphans of WWII, we need comfort and something to hold onto.

According to the Bible, we DO have “pieces of bread” to hold onto because Jesus is our Bread of Life!

Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, “He gave them bread from heaven to eat.” Jesus then said to them, “Truly, truly I say to you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven.  For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” “Sir, give us this bread always.”

Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.” (John 6:31-35)

We might not be physically starving, but often our souls need spiritual refreshment – sometimes we need a spiritual IV!  Jesus is the answer.  In Him is the promise of life through His blessings of help, healing, strength, and hope.

We are not the only ones to struggle.  Jesus also knew what it was like to be hungry and feel weak.  After His baptism, Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.  (Matthew 4:1-4.)

The Bible literally says in Matthew 4:2 that, after fasting  40 days and nights, “he was hungry.”   Satan knew Jesus was hungry, so his first temptation was an attempt to take advantage of Jesus’ physical weakness by tempting Jesus to turn stones into bread, but what was Jesus’ response?

Jesus answered, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” (Matthew 4:4)

In His response, Jesus taught us that true sustenance is found in the Word of God. 

John 1:14 goes on to tell us that the Word of God is Jesus!

  “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth…For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace…grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. “  (John 1:14-17)

True sustenance is found in the Word, and the Word is Jesus!  From the glory of the Father, through the Son, the Word became flesh!

Jesus confirms this when He calls Himself “the Bread of Life.” (John  6:35)

In the Lord’s prayer, the prayer that Jesus taught His disciples to pray, Jesus says, “Give us this day our daily bread.” (Matthew 5:11) Jesus was petitioning for our daily physical needs to be met, but as we think of Jesus as the Bread of Life, we can pray this for our spiritual needs, and be reminded that we need to be fed daily in a spiritual way, too.

The orphans of WWII slept with pieces of bread to give them comfort so they could rest.  As Christians, we have bread to hold onto, too.  We have the true sustenance of Jesus, who is the Bread of Life.

With Thanksgiving approaching, I titled this message, “Thank You for Our Daily Bread.”  That’s the last line of a familiar dinnertime prayer.  I share it now to thank God for sending His only Son to be our Bread of Life.

God is great, and God is good, And we thank Him for our food,

By His hands we all are fed. Thank You for our Daily Bread.    Amen.

I would like to share “pieces of bread” with you.  If you send me an email, I will reply with a collection of Bible promises and encouragements that have been helpful to me.  They are prepared so that they can be kept in document form or cut into individual verses.   Individual verses can be bound together or kept in a “bread basket”.  Verses can be read daily and as needed – “pieces of bread” to hold onto.

God bless you!

– Renee Myers  11-14-15

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