Today we hear a rather silly story about Elijah sitting under a broom tree in the desert. As the name suggests, a broom tree is small, spindly and doesn’t provide much shade. Elijah is mad and disillusioned that things have not gone his way. People are not responding with joy and enthusiasm to his prophetic words. He even prays for death! An angel touches him and encourages him to get up, eat, and be nourished so that he can continue the journey.
Have you ever felt like sitting under a broom tree, frustrated and disappointed that things haven’t gone your way? Perhaps you have found strength and encouragement from other people or directly from God. It may even have felt like a divine messenger was touching you. This is one of the ways we experience Jesus being the Bread of Life as he reminds us again in today’s gospel. Bread that nourishes and Life that is somehow deep and meaningful.