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Communion Meditations (2017)

Baby Food

John 6:53-58

Originally scheduled forJune 4

Those who have never had a child might find this somewhat unusual. But it is a well-known fact of life that, out of every jar of baby food, the baby gets only about a third. The rest will be used for scientific and artistic investigation. You will begin to wonder how a child that small can get strained peas inside his shoes. He also gets them inside his eyebrows, his nose, his ears and for good measure his surroundings will be covered with this green substance labeled “strained peas.” But if you want to feed the baby, these are the terms in which combat must be accepted.

When you look at something like this, should  someone ask what that person is doing, you tell them that she is feeding the baby. Feeding the baby isn’t just a straightforward sort of thing. It is the nature of communion to be one of those things that looks straightforward and simple, but carries a lot of meaning with it.

·         Even if your beliefs include transubstantiation in a crude physical sense, there is also the symbolic side of communion. Those symbols mean something.

·         Why is that? Because the creator of the universe, in particular the agent of all creation, said and we may quote, “this is my body.” And then “this is my blood.” If the one who defines existence by his very nature says “this is…” then who are we to argue?

So seriously does God take this simple ritual that he makes it a necessity. There is no place in Scripture which says that communion need be offered only once a year, or for that matter once a month. As far as we can tell, the apostles did it every week (and probably more often than that.) It is commanded, and with good reason:

·         First and foremost, it is a communion with Christ. It is a time for you to bring your sins and your sorrows too, your triumphs and your tragedies to the foot of the cross and lay them there surrendering all to Him.

·         In a curious sense, it is also a time for us to have communion with each other. At the very least we should recognize that we are not “solo Christians.”

Communion is an essential piece in the resurrection life. By taking communion you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes again. Doing that confirms that you believe in the resurrection and the power of God. Likewise, you understand from those same scriptures that there will be suffering on the part of the Christian; the servant is not above His Master. If Christ suffered, how can we avoid it? Ultimately, out of this experience, Christ shall return and bring us all through the resurrection of the dead. Every time you take communion, you proclaim that fact.

It is most necessary, therefore, to take communion in a worthy manner. Sober your mind, cleanse your heart and appear before your Lord, asking his forgiveness for your sins, and his blessings on your repentance. Then go forth from this place to be salt and light to the world.

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