One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.”Luke 11.1-4
He said to them, “When you pray, say:
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread….”
These beautiful sourdough loaves were baked by Diana. Every week she bakes bread and ‘feeds’ the sour dough culture. Bishop Steven loves to make bread too, and so do I, though I don’t often do it. Making bread has deep connections with nurturing, sustaining, nourishing. The theme of Bread runs throughout the gospel. Jesus was born in Bethlehem which means ‘the House of Bread’. His active ministry started with a wilderness retreat where he learned his identity and ministry and was tempted to turn stones into bread and satisfy his hunger. He resists saying, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” (Matthew 4.4) When the disciples ask how to pray he teaches them, ‘pray like this: “‘Father, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come. Give us each day our daily bread….” Luke 11.1-4
Today we remember Jesus instating the Sacrament of the Eucharist at his last supper before he is arrested and handed over to be crucified.
And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.”Luke 22. 19
And after the resurrection the two dejected friends recognised him in the village of Emmaeus when he broke bread at their dining table.
This year we have mourned our separation from receiving Holy Communion, though some will say we have been blessed with God’s true presence in many other ways and for many of us our faith has deepened through challenge and even through deprivation. The prayer for daily bread has been a prayer acknowledging our dependence on God every moment of every day.
Bread is truly a wonderful means of grace.
Thank you, Diana, for your baking.
Our Father in heaven, Give us each day our daily bread. Amen.
ACCORDING to thy gracious word,
In meek humility,
This will I do, my dying Lord,
I will remember thee.
Thy body, broken for my sake,
My bread from heaven shall be;
Thy testamental cup I take,
And thus remember thee.
Gethsemane can I forget?
Or there thy conflict see,
Thine agony and bloody sweat,
And not remember thee?
When to the cross I turn mine eyes
And rest on Calvary,
O Lamb of God, my sacrifice,
I must remember thee:
Remember thee, and all thy pains
And all thy love to me;
Yea, while a breath, a pulse remains,
Will I remember thee.
And when these failing lips grow dumb
And mind and memory flee,
When thou shalt in thy kingdom come,
Jesu, remember me.
JAMES MONTGOMERY 1771-1854