While reading the chapter on the Eucharist in Doug Erlandson's book, Spiritual Anorexia: How Contemporary Worship Is Starving the Church, last night, I wanted to blog about Communion. Indeed, several points Erlandson made on this wonderful church ordinance deepened my appreciation of it, so much so that I look forward to celebrating it again. As I do, I will look back on Christ's sacrifice on the cross, as well as to feasting with Him when He returns and resurrects my body.
For so many years, particularly when I identified myself as a Charismatic, taking the Lord's Supper (the term I prefer to use regarding the ordinance) left me disappointed. I took it with expectations of mystical sensations that almost never materialized. Predictably, I'd then blame myself for my apparent lack of spiritual receptivity.
In recent years, regretfully, I've strayed to the other extreme of being emotionally numb to the Lord's Supper, focusing almost exclusively on confessing my sins and praying for the ability to walk in repentance. Certainly, taking the Lord's Supper requires such self-examination and repentance to avoid God's judgment, and I in no way wish to imply that anyone should take the elements if they plan on persisting in sinful patterns. But such an exclusive concentration neglects the primary meaning of the celebration.
As I eat the bread that symbolizes Christ's body broken for me and drink the cup that symbolizes His blood shed for me, may I rejoice that His presence lives in me through the Holy Spirit. May I fear offending the Spirit by persisting in sinful thoughts, attitudes and behaviors. And may I eagerly anticipate eating and drinking with the Lord in His kingdom.