Striking Back

( [email protected] ) Oct 27, 2003 02:06 PM EST

Jesus asked the twelve, "Do you also wish to go away?" Simon Peter answered him, "Lord, to whom can we go? You have the words of eternal life."

-John 6:67-68 (NRSV)

WE praise our son when he eats all his meal. Sometimes when he's angry with us, he refuses to eat. At those times he glares at us triumphantly as though he has scored a great victory over us by not doing what is good for him. Apparently he feels that if eating pleases us, not eating must hurt us. He doesn't realize that his refusal to eat doesn't make us hungry; he's depriving only himself.

Some people act the same way with their doctors. They get angry or frustrated or impatient and stop taking their medicine, as if that will somehow affect the doctor. In fact they do not hurt the doctor at all; they hurt only themselves and aggravate their own physical ailments.

I recognize the same impulse in myself. If I have a grievance with God, it's easy for me to neglect prayer and Bible study, even though this only makes the situation worse. If we turn away from the Bread of Life, where will we find spiritual nourishment? If we turn away from the Great Physician, where will we find healing?


O God, free us from anger and protect us from self-deceit. Amen.


Only God can satisfy our hungers and heal us.


Those angry at God