John 6:57-58 WEB
As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father; so he who feeds on me, he will also live because of me.  This is the bread which came down out of heaven—not as our fathers ate the manna, and died. He who eats this bread will live forever.”
The Father knew that to keep the entire nation following Moses, he needed to provide the manna. It is strange to think that due to disobedience, the Israelites received a miracle (Num 14:1-4). When God came in smoke and rested on the Mountain, the Israelites pulled back from God. They wanted Moses. (Ex 20:19) They wanted a set of rules that they could see and touch.
I understand wanting to be secure in God. What’s unfortunate is when God offered the children of Israel the Promised Land, they could not trust him to take them in. When God wanted to meet with the children of Israel they also rejected him. They wanted bread, just not living bread. The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are life. More, all life exists by the power of God. When Jesus said he was the True Bread, he understood the nature of life.
We can either eat the food of the world or we can eat the food of heaven. Eating the food of heaven is not so mysterious. Jesus said his flesh and blood were food and drink. (John 6:54) On the cross, Jesus suffered in his flesh and his lifeblood drained away. So it seems that eating and drinking Christ must have something to do with suffering and death.
That sounds terrible, but it’s biblical. In Colossians 1:24 WEB Paul says, “Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and fill up on my part that which is lacking of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body’s sake, which is the assembly;” It is clear that Paul suffered in his flesh. Also, we know he was eventually martyred. Paul’s suffering and death were literal. Consequently, Paul changed the world. In his obedience to suffer, Paul wrote several of the most influential writings of all time.
Our suffering and death are metaphorical. We do not get flogged in today’s western world. However, we are challenged. Each challenge that brings suffering is a faith opportunity. When suffering comes, do you wait on God patiently? Or do you fall apart wondering why God is not helping? If you wait patiently, you are eating the flesh of Christ. More, when you make decisions that help others at your expense, you are laying down your life which is drinking the blood of Christ.
Lord Jesus, please teach me to suffer with faith. Change me on the inside so that I am willing to lay my life down for others. Please teach me to eat and drink of you, Lord. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.