Sharing communion makes us one

Frontline Devotion for February 12, 2012 (Season of 'Epiphany')

By: Susan Hill

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1 Corinthians 10:15-17

I speak as to sensible people; judge for yourselves what I say. The cup of blessing that we bless, is it not a sharing I the blood of Christ? Because there is one bread, we who are many are one body, for we all partake of the one bread.

My friends and family know I love to cook. For me, one of lifeís great pleasures is gathering friends together around a table to share good food lovingly prepared and beautifully presented. Such an event is not to be taken lightly! It takes time, generosity, imagination, and energy to invite the guests, prepare the home and table, gather and flavor the food, welcome and comfort the guests, serve, and finally, clean up.

Hosting such an event is an investment of sorts. There are rewards! Guests enjoy the food, of course, and the celebration that accompanies the meal. More importantly, perhaps, the dinner guests feel cared for. They are nurtured physically and spiritually at our table. Whatís more, theyíre likely to connect, to learn to know one another better, and to form or deepen friendships as they share food and conversation. Relationships strengthened at a dinner table and carried into the community may well work for good in the future.

Jesus was and is a gracious dinner host. His generosity is unsurpassable; his love and solidarity with the hungry a re-enactment of God with us. Jesus fed the five thousand. He served bread and wine to his disciples in the Upper Room. He invited all to feast at his table, revealed himself in the breaking of bread, and still feeds his followers with his own body and blood.

Everything that happens in Jesusí name today is invested in that meal to which all have been invited. Itís at Jesusí table that Christians come together to be nourished as one from the same cup and bread. The act of eating together seals our identity as Christians and binds us in purpose each time we do it. Itís that unity as people of God in Christ Jesus that empowers us to go from the table out into the world to work for good.

Prayer: Holy and generous God, you have provided food for our bodies and spirits so that we may do your will. Direct our congregation and Christian churches everywhere to do good in your name so that all may know your power and grace. In Jesusí name, Amen.