TAKING CHRIST AS FOOD
"As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who eats Me, he also shall live because of Me." John 5:57
Christ in You, the Hope of Glory
Paul tells us that if you are a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, you have Christ dwelling within you. Christ, by means of His Spirit, actually comes to live inside the believer at the moment he is born from above.
So if Christ is already in us, why do we need to take Him in? The answer lies in the illustration we have of eating food.
Acquisition and Assimilation
I would like to simplify the process of our physical bodies taking in food. It's basically a two step process. First, there is the taking in, the eating. You take a piece of fruit, for example, bite it, chew it, and then swallow it. Now the apple is in you. You have received the apple into your body. This is the first step. Now, in a very basic sense, you can say that the apple is part of you. Because it lies within you stomach. However, the digestion process has not yet begun. The oneness you have with the apple is still only elementary.
Now begins the process of digestion. This is when the apple is chemically broken down in order to be assimilated into every fiber of your being. In the stomach, the apple is broken down by the application of digestive juices which liquify the density of the fruit. Then, it is taken into the bloodstream and distributed to every part of the body. Every part of the body is then nourished by the apple. Now the apple has been integrated into every part of your anatomy and the oneness has been made a living reality! Please forgive this biological explanation, but it does help explain some things!
Spirit, Soul, and Body
The scriptures teach that man is a tri-partite being. We are made up of spirit, soul, and body. (I Thess. 4:23, Heb. 4:12) The spirit is the non-dimensional part of us that comes from the other realm. That's where the Holy Spirit resides. The soul is the seat of personality where we have our mind, will, and emotions. The body is obviously our physical body. You could say that the spirit has been saved, the soul is being saved, and the body will be saved when we get a new one. God wants to transform your soul (mind, will, emotions). He has deposited Christ into your spirit. Now He wants the assimilation process to begin. He wants Christ to be integrated into every part of your soul. This integration process is activated by an act of your will.
The Act of Prayer
This is not prayer as we normally understand it. I'm not speaking here of intersession, asking God for things, or really any kind of speaking at all. This "assimilation" of Christ into your soul is actually something quite different. This is an act of plunging your soul into the very depths of Christ who lives within your spirit!
The fact is that our souls need continuous saturation and exposure to Jesus Christ in order to be transformed. The Lord wants to permeate every facet of our mind, will, and emotions. But this happens as we take Him in and digest Him as our food. What I am speaking of here is a deep fellowship with Christ within our spirits. When we completely turn our soul (mind, will, emotions) to the Lord within us, our soul slowly begins to assimilate Him as our Food. This is an inward turning of all that we are to all that He is. But the turning is only the first step. Once we are in His presence, then there is the fellowship with Him as He is fellowshipping with the Father; and then the resting in that fellowship. All needs are met. Now there is no longer any thought of my needs at all! In fact, I have disappeared into Him! Now, He is everything.
Some Practical Help
There are many places in Scripture that describe this beautiful union with Christ by taking Him as Food. One of the best is Psalm 23. There is also a book written by Jeanne Guyon that you can obtain by clicking here: A Short and Easy Method of Prayer: Praying the Heart of the Father (Authentic Original Classic) .