Originally scheduled for September 18
Few things give rise to a more frightful anticipation that a visit
to the oral surgeon to have a tooth removed. Sounds of tooth roots
being cracked are quite memorable; as you can only hear what is
going on the question sometimes occurs, “How did he get a backhoe in
my mouth?” Of course, the surgeon is doing the best he can to make
this as painless and un-frightful as possible. Unfortunately, the
possibilities during a tooth extraction all seem to go the way of
promoting fear and terror.
Most of us forget, however, that the treatment includes a second
visit. It is a much less frightful anticipation. The surgeon is
going to go in and remove the stitches, which is a relatively
painless procedure. It’s a milestone on the way to recovery as well.
He will inspect the area and check for infection. This is rather
rare, but needs to be checked on. One purpose of the visit which may
not be apparent to you is this: the surgeon needs to reassure the
patient that things are progressing normally, everything is fine,
see you in three months. This, along with the ordinary care
instructions, tends to leave the patient with a smile — even with a
If we may draw a parallel, Communion is like that second visit. The
first trip, coming to the Lord, can often be one that is quite
traumatic. Each of us has a different experience with this, but some
of us have had a really rough time becoming a Christian. That’s
usually not the case with communion, however.
Like the stitches being taken out, communion is a time to
evaluate yourself and see if you’ve grown sufficiently to tackle new
challenges. No one becomes super-holy all at once; most of us never
get there at all. But we need to recognize that occasionally there
are changes that can be made because we become more mature.
Communion is a time of self-examination.
Like the check for infection, you need to look and see if
Satan is assaulting you in a different way. Satan will not ignore
you, but might provide a new type of temptation. Examine your life
and see if such a thing has entered it. Then place the matter in
God’s hands to strengthen you. Communion is a time of
It is also a time of reassurance. How do I know I’m saved?
The answer comes in the body and blood of Jesus Christ, the price
paid for the atonement of our sins. It is not an accident that
communion is designed to remind us of this. Remember, you’re relying
on Him, not yourself.
So, today, listen to the words of instruction and encouragement that
are being given to you. These are to help you grow and become a more
mature Christian. Let God have charge of your life so that you might
become more able to help others. Most of all, remember the purpose
of communion – to remind you of the body and blood of Christ, shed
for your sins and guaranteeing your salvation.