PRAYER FOR THE WEEK
Jesus, teach me to pay attention when someone warns me what might happen if I don’t listen! Amen.


“I am the living bread that came down from heaven,” Jesus said. “The bread that I give you is myself, and if you eat it, you’ll live forever.” The people got angry. “How can He give us Himself to eat?” they asked. Jesus answered: “If you don’t eat my body and drink my blood, you will have no life in you.”

“OK, don’t do it — and see what happens!”

When you’re told to do something and you refuse, you might hear that response. The person is hinting that, if you don’t listen, bad things may happen.

Parents use that response when they’re tired of arguing with you about something they believe you should do. Bullies use that response when they’re threatening you: “Sure, don’t hand over your snack — and see what happens!”

In this week’s Gospel (John 6:51-58), even Jesus gets frustrated enough to say it!

There wasn’t much Jesus said that people didn’t argue about. Often, people either didn’t understand Him or didn’t agree. Jesus had to be patient in explaining things over and over.

This time, it was like your mother getting annoyed because you don’t see why you have to clean your room right now. Jesus told people to share communion — His body and blood — and they didn’t get it. They thought He meant they should literally drink blood, something their religion wouldn’t allow, so they argued.

Jesus’ response was, “Fine, don’t do it — and see what happens!” He was trying to help them get closer to God and become a community, sharing the Eucharist. Why would they argue?

When you won’t do something and you get the “see what happens if you don’t” response, think twice. Of course, if a bully is saying it, you should report the person; but, if someone you love and respect says, “See what happens if you don’t do this,” think about what that means.

What really will happen if you don’t listen? Will you miss out on things because you’re grounded? Will your allowance be taken away?

When people didn’t listen to Jesus, He warned them of a bigger consequence: They might be giving up on heaven!