“Taking the bread, he broke it, and gave thanks.” … “He gave it to his disciples, saying, ‘Take, eat, this is my body which shall be broken for you.” … Broken. Jewish tradition. Jews never cut bread, they never sliced it the way we do. Bread was looked upon as so needed to sustain life that to take a knife to it was like putting a knife to a living persons throat. It just wasn’t done. Bad manners if not bad form. No, they broke or tore it instead. They did this out of, and with, respect. Respect for life and what gives life. And with thanksgiving. Consider the prophetic nature of this tradition. Jesus, on the same night he was betrayed, gave thanks for his soon to be brokenness. A matter of written prophecy for thousands of years he knew it to be his destiny, and one freely chosen by him. This is the bread that came down from heaven. Its why he came. If I eat it I may have life forever. Its why he came. At this time of year we give thanks. We have big meals with lots of good food. We spend time with family and friends. And then we watch football in an effort to stay awake after all that turkey. (My humor: I can’t think of any other reason to watch football. I mean, the “ball” isn’t even round. I’ll listen to music and read instead.) All of that is fine. But for my own part I think that when I eat my Thanksgiving meal if there is sliced bread on the table I’ll consider the above mentioned Jewish tradition and I’ll ask myself: Do I treat the Bread of Life with the respect he deserves or do I live as though I cut through life by my words and actions with a knife? And then, depending on my answer, I’ll either give thanks or I’ll beg forgiveness. Its why he came.

Published in: on November 20, 2010 at 4:02 pm  Comments Off on Thanksgiving