Reflection on Mass Reading for June 18, 2017
It has been a couple of years now, but I distinctly remember a talk given by a wonderful and spiritually-driven woman who presented her answer to the age-old question, “Why do we overeat?” She narrowed it down to five main reasons.
Panic. Reaction to much anxiety, fear and stress.
Comfort. The attempt to nurture, soothe and care for unmet needs and feelings.
Self-protection. Numbing action because we can’t or won’t face our feelings.
Frustration. Things go wrong so we head for food.
Shame and self-pity. Whatever is wrong with life, we take the blame and hide.
Today, we celebrate the Great Feast of the Body and Blood of Jesus. In this celebration we proclaim our belief in the real presence of Jesus Christ in the Holy Eucharist. We also proclaim that the same Jesus lives within each one of us who are baptized into His Holy Body, the Church. We call this the mystery of communion because our faith and life is all about relationship with the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.
Let us now return to our original question, “why am I so hungry,” and by extension, “why do we overeat?” Whether anything is off-balance or troublesome in our lives, it is because something is troubling inside of us, at our very core, which is our soul. Ask yourself about each of the painful reasons we may overeat. Why do we ingest and consume so many things that will never satisfy and actually hurt us? Why do we sometimes gravitate to unhealthy relationships? If we truly believed that Jesus Christ is alive and real in the Eucharist, how would he make a difference in our lives?
Panic. “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me.”
Comfort. “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you.”
Self-protection. “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.”
Frustration. “So I say to you, Ask and it will be given to you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you.”
Shame and self-pity. “Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.”