A Meditation by my great uncle
He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To everyone who is victorious I will give some of the manna that has been hidden away in Heaven. And to everyone who overcomes, I will give the right to sit with Me on my throne, just as I overcame and sat down with my Father on His throne.
Revelation 2:17; 3:21
Manna may not sound very exciting to those of us brought up on rich and varied fare – the Lord will surely have more exotic wonders on display at the great heavenly banquet, but Jesus is the Bread of Life, and what He’s really saying here is that He’s offering us more of Himself, as well as providing us with daily manna to sustain us on our journey.
On the very last day, when all has been confessed and dealt with, our whole being shall be perfectly fulfilled in Him. Our minds will be filled with wisdom from the Tree of Life, our hearts with the love that flows from His presence, our wills will be entirely one with His, and our senses happy and absorbed with Him, and with everything that pertains to Him.
In the new Jerusalem that comes down from Heaven there will be no night to separate us from His presence, for the light of the Lord God Himself will illuminate everything.
Here on earth we live surrounded by darkness on every side, but on the day we are crowned, all darkness will be left behind, and we will spend eternity in the love from which all pain has been removed. We will see His face, and His name will be written on our foreheads.
In the meantime we are in God’s School of Sanctity – and the glory of this school lies in the individual care that the Lord bestows on each one of us. We are His precious students, and as we continue in it day by day, we become increasingly conscious not only of His presence but also of His attention to detail.
When the going gets rough, the strength of our union with Him, and His sheer determination will carry us through all periods of temptation, trial and dryness.
Morning by morning He invites each one of us into His presence – and how foolish we would be to skip this invitation because we were too concerned to get on with our own affairs. And then we need to make time to reflect on whatever it is the Lord has dropped into our spirits. If we rush this process, we may never quite reach the depths of confidence and insight let alone of repentance and gratitude, that He longs for us to walk in.
There’s no point trying to second guess what He wants to say to us, but neither should we feel disappointed if our time with Him is not filled with any particular sense of sweetness or clarity.
We may have to push through a whole pile of distractions, but the Lord honours the fact that we are prepared to set time aside in this way to be with Him. There is plenty of opportunity to catch up on anything we forgot to bring Him then, or when we truly don’t have much time to spend with Him.
Little by little, His concerns increasingly shape our hearts, as we care and pray for others, and as we become ever more concerned for the wellbeing of whatever spheres of service He lays on our heart.
These will be quite different from one person to the next – but because we are learning to bring everything that comes across our path to Him, prayer itself ceases to be a burden: it becomes the most natural expression of our profound oneness with Jesus.
Detail becomes union, and all is one vast desire, as we fix our wills on God and let His Spirit move within us, for we are in the great school of His Sacred Heart, and He delights to teach and lead us.
What does it mean to you to feed on God’s daily manna? Or to put that the other way round: what difference does it make if you neglect to spend time with him in this way?
Nothing can compare with those glorious days when He draws back the veil and fills us afresh with His fullness. It’s like the sun coming out after a storm, and every single person and event has its role to play in contributing to God’s grand scheme of things.
Jesus told His disciples that His food is to do the will of Him who sent Him and to accomplish His work – accomplish in the sense both of doing the work and of finishing it.
Let’s resolve to persevere until the time finally comes when we reach the light which knows no night.
For now Jesus remains present with us, and His whole heart is filled with our joys and sorrows – and He delights to lead us daily to the people, places and spheres of service that constitute His manna for us each day.
Don’t forget the idea we mentioned in an earlier edition of spending spend thirty seconds in the Lord’s presence quietly looking up to His throne before embarking on anything.
It’s amazing how much God can do in such a short time, and it will help us to know what He would have us accomplish from day to day!