Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Posts from the Past: Give us this Day

Revisiting a series first published on this blog in 2005; original post here.

Give us this day our daily bread.

We return to the first person plural: the language of “we” and “our.” And in the verb “give,” we hear the universal voice of our primordial desires. It is the voice with which all creation groans, a voice calling out to God from the ends of the earth. Our desire is to receive; our call is “give us”; our longing is for “bread.” Not just any bread, but “daily” bread, to meet our constant need. “Supersubstantial” bread, to be literal. What else is this daily bread, then, but the very God we call “Father”? It is God, our origin, who alone nourishes and feeds us, whose life we long for.

Our desire, then, corresponds to and expresses a great truth which becomes prayer in the Our Father. “One does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God” (cf. Dt. 8:3). This is “the bread of God come down from heaven” that “gives life to the world” (cf. Jn. 6:33). And this Word, made flesh, is “real food” for us, bread given for the life of the world. Daily bread. Supersubstantial bread, “one in being” with the Father. The only bread that satisfies the hungers of the world, and for which we pray, “Give us this day our daily bread.”

Earlier posts in this series:
Our Father, Who Art in Heaven
Hallowed be Thy Name
Thy Kingdom Come
Thy Will be Done on Earth...

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