Enough for me.
â€œJust as the living Father sent me and I have life because of the Father, so also the one who feeds on me will have life because of me.â€
Thursday, we celebrated the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Jesus. Today is the Sunday within the Octave, the eight-day period that began Thursday which we spend in celebration of Jesusâ€™ wonderful gift to us.
Is Jesusâ€™ gift enough?
The Russian poet and singer-songwriter Bulat Okudzhava wrote â€˜The Prayer of FranÃ§ois Villon,â€™ in Polish, Modlitwa FranÃ§ois Villona. Its words are those of a person who prays that the Lord will grant gifts to all who ask, and after doing so would leave just a little for him. Its first stanza:
â€œAs long as the worldâ€™s still turning, As long as the airâ€™s still sweet, Lord, wonâ€™t you give to all of us Whatever it is we need. Give a mind to the wise one, To the coward a swift horse, Give some gold to the happy man, And donâ€™t forget about me.â€ As the song ends, he repeats â€œGive a little to everyone, And donâ€™t forget about me. DajÅ¼e nam wszystkim po trochu. I mnie w opiece swej miej.â€
Is Jesusâ€™ gift enough?
This song strikes home in its melancholy. Is God generous enough to leave just a little for me? Will He remember me in the midst of all the woe and strife in the world? Will my prayer rise up before Him? Will He reach out to me?
St. Thomas Aquinas answered that question as he contemplated the great gift of the Eucharist and our sharing in it. The bread, broken, fractured for us. The wine poured out. In each particle, in each droplet, the fulness of Jesus resides. No person receives more or less of Jesus. All receive equally. There is enough for all. Aquinas also echoes St. Paul in pointing out that while all receive the fulness of Jesus, it is the state of our heart that matters most.
Is Jesusâ€™ gift enough? Yes. Is it enough for me? That is the real question. The state of our hearts in their attitude toward God, the state of our lives in their imaging of Jesusâ€™ way, and our relationship to others shows whether what we have received is enough for us. It is not a question of Godâ€™s giving, but our receiving. If we have taken the gift seriously it has changed our hearts. The state of our heart matters most.
Let us, as we fall in worship before this great gift, receive Jesus as enough for me and live in Him. Let us then carry His fulness into the world and to our eternal reward.