I am the bread of life

John 6:35

67. ….. In the same  way, in His unutterable and inconceivable bounty  Christ  reduces and  embodies  Himself, commingling  with  and embracing the soul  that aspires to  Him  with  faith  and  love  and, as  St  Paul  puts it  (cf.  1  Cor. 6:17), becoming  one  spirit with  it, His soul  united  with  our soul  and  His Person  with  our  person.  Thus such  a soul  lives and  has its  being in  His divinity, attaining immortal  life and  delighting in  incorruptible  pleasure  and inexpressible glory.  

68. In  a soul  of  this  kind  the Lord  when He wills is  fire, consuming  every sinful  and  alien  thing  in  it, in accordance with  the words,  ‘Our God is  a consuming fire’  (Deut.  4:24); at other  times  He  is repose,  wondrous and indescribable; or else joy and peace,  cherishing and embracing it. Only it  must  aspire to Him  with love and devote itself to  holy ways  of  life, and  then  through  direct experience, with  its own perception,  it  will see itself partaking  of unutterable  blessings that  ‘the  eye has not seen, and the ear has not heard, and  man’s heart  has not  grasped’  (1  Cor. 2:9). For to  the soul  that proves itself worthy  of Him  the Spirit of the  Lord  is  now  repose,  now intense  joy,  now delight  and life. Just  as  He embodies  Himself in  spiritual  food, so  He embodies  Himself in indescribable raiment  and beauty, so  that He fills the soul with  spiritual gladness.  As He Himself said:  ‘I am the bread of life’  (John 6:35); and: ‘If anyone drinks of the water that I  give him … it will be  in him a spring of water welling  up for eternal life’  (John 4:14).  

St  Symeon  Metaphrastis, Paraphrase  of  the  Homilies of St  Makarios  of  Egypt,  IV  The Raising of the Intellect, Philokalia, V3.314

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