Tag Archives: communion

Eat First

With the Lord’s Supper

For T. C.

A Sunday that included the Eucharist.

I recognize this.  Even in the children’s moment

you connected, like a prelude, the joy

of what was to come.

 “Break Thou the Bread of Life.”

Built the excitement, familiar, comforting

     Break Thou the bread of life, dear Lord, to me

     As Thou didst break the loaves beside the sea;

     Beyond the sacred page I seek Thee, Lord;

     My spirit pants for Thee, O living Word!*

And us so close to the sea!

 

The great prayer of thanksgiving lead us through

the  tide-pool of the ritual fully formed, and yet, like a watched bloom…

We waded through the prayer, almost unsuspecting.

At the words of institution echoing the first last supper,

it came bursting through the break in the loaf,

rising up like the star of Bethlehem.

 

The pieces hungry for the hand, the cup,

like sea spray, stinging and healing all at once,

The unworthy mouth that longs for You to abide under

its roof. Sopped in the juices, carrying

the preacher’s charge,

straight to my soul,

Walking the journey,

fully nourished.

*Mary A. Lathbury – Break Thou the Bread of Life

Because of Him,

Linda

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From the Inside Out

Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just show up and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come. 
                                            ~ Anne Lamott
 
 So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out.
                                           ~ Romans 12:1-2
 
 
  
     Last night, I experienced worship in an intimate setting:  a few people, some candles, prayer, communion, singing, reflection.
     We were invited to virtually  put all our cares in a shopping bag and go to the door, empty the bag, and bring it back.
     The worship progressed through all of the above with the thread of grace. It was cleansing, challenging, quiet, perfect.  I loved the thought that our leader gave us about communion.  It gave a whole new meaning to the word “remember.”
     In addition to recalling the night the Lord was betrayed,  we were asked to think about the word in contrast to the word dis-member, the suggestion that when we partake in the Lord’s Supper, we don’t take him apart, but by participating we put Him, the Body of Christ, back together.
     It gave me a whole new way to pray.  Not only for healing, for being made whole, but for the entire body of Christ to experience this healing. this unity from the inside out.  The song below came into my head immediately when I read the scripture.
     Meditate on it today.  Give Him control from the inside out.
Because of Him,
Linda
From the Inside Out.
Hillsong

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Trust the Process

In this age, which believes that there is a short cut to everything, the greatest lesson to be learned is that the most difficult way is, in the long run, the easiest.
 
                                                      ~Henry Miller
 
God’s glory is on tour in the skies,
    God-craft on exhibit across the horizon.
Madame Day holds classes every morning,
    Professor Night lectures each evening.
                                                       ~ Psalm 19:1-2
 
     She was teaching Sunday School to third and fourth graders.  There was no church rule about when the age of reason occurred, so there was no formal recognition of a first communion.  It was left to the parents to know and decide.
 
      “All baptized persons” was the tradition, and in the invitation.  Yet, there was resistance.  The co-teachers tried everything to make it happen, got statements from parents, tried observing having communion served to the teachers in the class (but not the students!), and finally got a lift on the in-house resistance. The children were allowed to sit with their teachers on Communion Sunday.
     Other voices were better heard than the co-teachers who began the movement and now children sit with their parents on Communion Sunday and partake and remain in the service.
     It took YEARS but it happened.  And now that is the “new tradition.”  God’s glory is manifest in the day, in the night, in the earth, in the skies and in the process.  
     Don’t give up.  Give in to Him. Listen to wisdom, find the voices that can be heard and back down.
 
Because of Him,
Linda

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In a church far, far away…

Never invest in any idea you can’t illustrate with a crayon. 

   ~ Peter Lynch
 
 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of his Son, how much more, since we have been reconciled, will we be saved by his life?
 
~ Romans 5:10
 
The issue was a simple one
we teachers did agree.
When Communion Sunday came
we wanted to partake.
 
We brought our honest query
our superior just said no.
When Communion Sunday came,
our hearts began to ache.
 
We approached it once again,
the rules she read right back
“They must all be baptized.”
New action we must take.
 
We checked with all the parents,
our kids had all been doused,
we brought back our results with joy,
“Oh there must be some mistake.”
 
Back and forth and forth and back
the arguments ensued
After oh so many times
we could now partake!
 
Once a month the kids could sit
amongst their families,
take communion, stay a while.
With joy now did we shake!
 
The years have passed, 
the teachers changed
Each month the kids are there.
Adversarial no more,
Friends through answered prayer.
 
LTD.

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Emotional Eating and Communion

Get mad, then get over it.  

 
     ~ Colin Powell
Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to me shall not hunger, and he who believes in me shall never thirst.
 
     ~ John 6:35
 
People eat and drink for all kinds of reasons.  I heard from a friend that her husband discovered that he was an emotional eater over Thanksgiving.  He is in his late 50’s and this is the first time he came to grips with this.  When you stuff food in your mouth, you cannot speak out in anger, or voice an opinion, or make an claims.  When you pour liquid down your throat, you might be self-medicating, or simply avoiding your own feelings.  
 
It is such a different thing to witness emotional eating, and to witness Communion.  The faces on the people are hopeful, expectant, pleasant.  The faces on the servers are happy, sometimes dutiful, most often joyful.  There is a holiness in the air, a joy in taking the bread and juice. There is the possibility of healing.  It is a symbolic re-enactment, ever vital, ever new of the consuming with Jesus, of Jesus.  “Bread of heaven, fill me till I want no more,”
 
Can you imagine not wanting more of Jesus?  But it is so much more than bread and wine.  It is a giving over of ourselves to the Holy One of Israel, it is a surrender to His will.  It is a new beginning every time
 
When you get mad, or angry (properly stated,) indeed let it come and go, and think of the bread of Heaven.  You will be filled with so much more.
 
Breath of Heaven
 
Because of Him,
Linda

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Breakfast with Nana

Habit is habit, and not to be flung out of the window by any man, but coaxed downstairs a step at a time.

 
  ~ Mark Twain

 
 
What a God we have! And how fortunate we are to have him, this Father of our Master Jesus! Because Jesus was raised from the dead, we’ve been given a brand-new life and have everything to live for, including a future in heaven—and the future starts now! God is keeping careful watch over us and the future. The Day is coming when you’ll have it all—life healed and whole.
 
 ~ 1 Peter1:3
 
Habit…we don’t have habits that are instant. At least I don’t believe I do.  The good and the bad have to be coaxed  in or out, down the stairs and out the door or down the stairs and into …whatever it needs to be.  There is a Cheerios commercial running right now that uses habit in a lovely way.
Cheerios
The child asks if his mom used to have Cheerios for breakfast with Nana.  The mom responds “Yes.” 
The child inquires further, “Were Cheerios the same back then?” 
Mom says, “Cheerios have been pretty much the same forever.”
Child says, “So, when we have Cheerios it’s kind of like having breakfast with Nana.”
The mother’s breath catches and then she says “Yeah.”  And “Yeah again with a joyful upturn.”  And then, “You’re so smart.”
 
As you face this habit of communion this World Communion Sunday, remember, It’s like having bread with Jesus…all over this world.
Today, relax your prejudices, political and otherwise. Let the Lord shine through the simple things, like breakfast.
 
Because of Him,
Linda

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If I Had Words

Care of the soul is quite different in scope from most  modern notions of psychology and psychotherapy.  It isn’t about curing, fixing, changing adjusting or making healthy, and it isn’t about some idea of perfection or even improvement.  It doesn’t look to the future for an ideal, trouble-free existence.  Rather, it remains patiently in the present, close to life as it present itself day by day, and yet at the same time mindful of religion and spirituality… Care of the soul is a sacred art.

 
     Thomas Moore (1940-    )
     Psychotherapist and author
 
11 Beloved, since God loved us so much, we also ought to love one another.12 No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God lives in us, and his love is perfected in us.
 
     1 John 4:11-12
 
The Love of God
 
    Sometimes I think that the soul is like a thin membrane, easily torn, like the membrane around the egg, even after it is hard boiled.  I think it will dissolve like communion wafer on the tongue.  Yet, I have struggled with gristle (hard to see sometimes and harder to gracefully remove, and have known the strength of the placenta that endures for months in most cases, before the birth of a baby.  What God makes has to be valuable, strong and pliable and resilient.  I think that is why Thomas Moore used the word patiently in the phrase “patiently in the present.”
 
     Who among us does not long for the banqueting table, the banner of love unfurled above us in the halls of Heaven? Who has not imagined looking into the face of God and shining like the sun?  We must stay in the present, mindful of looking just above the horizon so the shore is clear.  We must offer our joys and concerns to the one who is shaping us, leading us, moving us forward through the largest trouble drifts we can imagine.  Once we cross over, our end zone “happy dance” will rival the prophets and kings, but for now,  we must be vigilant, faithful, artful…and practice that dance every chance we get.
 
If I had words to make a day for you.
 
     Because of Him,
     Linda

 

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