Suddenly, Jesus is there.

After his death, after his resurrection, Jesus shows up again for his followers. And each time it is a stunning experience for them.

Things haven't changed. When Jesus appears in our lives it still takes us by surprise. It could happen any moment, however ready we are – or not.

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When they had gone ashore, they saw a charcoal fire there, with fish on it, and bread. Jesus said to them, “Bring some of the fish that you have just caught.” So Simon Peter went aboard and hauled the net ashore, full of large fish, a hundred fifty-three of them; and though there were so many, the net was not torn. Jesus said to them, “Come and have breakfast.” Now none of the disciples dared to ask him, “Who are you?” because they knew it was the Lord. Jesus came and took the bread and gave it to them, and did the same with the fish. This was now the third time that Jesus appeared to the disciples after he was raised from the dead.

John 21:9-14

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Why does Jesus prepare breakfast for his friends? Jesus’ act of breaking bread seems to remind his disciples of the final Passover meal he shared with them the night he was betrayed. On that night he took some bread and gave thanks, then he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of me.” Later he took the cup, saying, “This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood.” Perhaps the memory of the Passover meal is just one among many memories flooding their hearts. Maybe they’re remembering the time Jesus turned water into wine (John 2), or fed five thousand people (John 6), or the dinner where Mary anointed Jesus’ feet with her hair (John 12).

Taken together, these Gospel stories teach us that breaking bread is crucial to Christian identity. Every time we share the communion meal with one another, we believe that Jesus is as present to us as he was to those disciples who shared breakfast with him on the beach.

Tammy Wiens-Sorge

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Thank you, God, for Jesus Christ, who cares for me both physically and spiritually. Thank you for providing nourishment for my body and my soul. Amen.

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The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love....

He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities. For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far he removes our transgressions from us.

Psalm 103:8, 10-12

Tammy Wiens-Sorge

Tammy Wiens-Sorge serves as a parish associate at Hot Metal Bridge Faith Community.

He Lives

Ken Medema

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