“My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work.” ~John 4:34
Jesus says these words in the context of his encounter with the Samaritan woman at the well. She had come looking for water. But Jesus talked to her about living water. He visited with her about eternal life. He envisioned for her a genuine relationship with God based on spirit and truth. He met her needs. Not her physical needs. Not her culturally-defined needs. He met her eternal needs for love and grace, mercy and compassion, forgiveness and restoration and salvation.
That’s my food, Jesus says. That’s my passion. That’s my calling. That’s what sustains me. That’s what keeps me going. That’s my calling. That’s how I live.
Jesus says, that’s my need. To seek and save the lost.
If we’re not careful, we can give in to the temptation to give people what they want, not what they need. It’s actually a lot easier to give people what the culture tells them they need than what Holy Scripture says they need. And if we’re not careful, our focus can become all about using more media, initiating more programs, hiring more ministers, building bigger buildings, starting new focus groups, and forming more committees to offer people what they can already get at NorthEast Mall.
If God’s Church can’t offer the world something the world can’t already get at Wal-Mart or Six Flags or Chuck E. Cheese, than God’s Church is not meeting needs The Jesus Way.
Jesus has met our deepest eternal needs, the Jesus Way, by dying on a cross to redeem us from our sins and then breathing into our nostrils his resurrection. Our food — my food — is to do the will of him who saved us by meeting the deep eternal needs of our community the Jesus Way.