Jesus is preparing His disciples for a journey. This journey is filled with challenges, despair and uncertainty. However Jesus gives His disciples, and all of us, provisions for the trip. Before Jesus enters into the events leading to his death, He gives the disciples His flesh and blood as sustenance and promise. The promise is of an everlasting feast when they meet again.
When beginning a long road trip you pack snacks. They may be whatever you had lying around the kitchen, or specific foods that follow the latest cleanse that you were talked into, but both serve the same purpose, to sustain you on your trip. As you travel, the snacks provide relief and even a saving power, especially when crossing the featureless prairies. If the food you packed runs out, there is always a gas station or a McDonald’s that can pull you away from the conquering hunger, but those stops or snacks are not the last word in your trip. Often we know that the final destination contains good people, a welcoming home, and a satisfying meal. This meal at the end of the road gives hope throughout the journey, a knowledge that something better is coming when the journey has reached its end.
When we partake in the Lord’s Supper that Jesus first gave His disciples, we tap into the provisions that Jesus has given us for the journey. These provisions unite us, His church, and continue to pull us out of the mundane and mediocrity that constantly consumes us. Jesus gives us His flesh and blood as a reminder of what He has done for us, a hope that we will be sustained.
In Matthew 26:29 Jesus promises, “I tell you, I will never again drink of this fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom” (NRSV). Jesus has provided the sustaining food for our trip, and promises that there is more to come when we will meet with Him again. The meal at the end of our journey has been prepared by the Divine Giver, filled with eternally sustaining food, so we hunger no more.