bread alone, food, Israelites, Jesus, manna, Matthew, Numbers, psalm 81, The Awakening Tales, The Sophia Center for Spirituality, the spiritual center, wisdom
Everything in today’s readings speaks of food. The Israelites in the desert grumble because instead of fish or meat to eat they have the manna sent from heaven. (NM 11:4-15). Jesus feeds a huge crowd with five loaves and two fish. (MT 14:13-21) Psalm 81 ends with the promise: I myself will feed you from the finest wheat. I will satisfy your longing for earth’s sweetest food, with honey I so carefully extracted from the rock. But it is the verse before the gospel that brings it all together with the lesson I will carry with me through the day. One does not live on bread alone, it says, but on every word that comes forth from the mouth of God. (MT 4:4).
There is a lovely story* familiar to many of our friends and the people who come to our home, the Spiritual Center, for retreats or workshops. Set in a beautiful glen, inhabited by animals and a wise, kindly Wizard, it tells of the day a human comes to the Glen. He arrives just as some of the animals are sharing breakfast at the Crystal Pool. When Fawn approaches him with a greeting of “Good food to you!” the man retorts, “Strange way to say ‘Good morning.'” Fawn replies, “Mornings are always good. It’s food I wish for you, stranger.” Then follows a wonderful exercise where the animals show the man what they mean. At the Crystal Pool, Fawn and Joyhopper, the Rabbit, stand close to the water, first look into each other’s eyes and then into the Crystal Pool saying, “Good food of sweet grass to you, Fawn” and “Good food of young carrots to you, Joyhopper.” The wind stirs the water and miraculously a bunch of young carrots and a pile of sweet grass appear in front of the animals. The man, Alan Stuck, misunderstands the miracle and thinks that he has a way to obtain treasure, going to the pool and commanding, “Jewels!” (Nothing happens.) “Gold,” he yells. (Nothing.) “Steak with all the trimmings!” (No luck.) It takes a lesson from the Indigo Wizard for Alan to understand that it is in generosity and community that one receives the food necessary to live well.
So my wish today is for “Good Food to all.” May the God of wisdom grant us all that we need to make the world a better place.
*The book, The Awakening Tales (book one of The Tales of the Indigo Wizard) is available by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.