Today we have a happy link between Easter Sunday and our Communion service.
First, we look backwards: Like the Jewish Passover from which it is derived, the Christian Communion looks backwards (1 Cor 11:24-26). We look back to the saving deeds of Jesus on the Cross. As we look back to the Cross, we are moved to thanksgiving and we are encouraged as we see how much God loved us and how secure our salvation is. This looking backwards is a central part of our Communion service and is the foundation of the other two 'looks'
Think back on the Easter story today. What did Jesus do for you? How great was his love? How can you express your gratitude to him?
Second, we look around:The communion service is a communion with God. It is also a communion or fellowship with one another. A very practical expression of this is found in1 Cor 11:17-22 & 34.. The Corinthian Communion service (or Lord's Supper) had become a source of scandal and division. The portions of bread and wine must have being rather more generous than today, for some came early to eat and drink their fill before others arrived. The result is that some finished up drunk while others starved! This is far from the picture given a little earlier:Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body, for we all partake of one loaf (1 Cor 10: 17)
As we eat and drink today, look around. Is there division between you and another worshipper? What can you do to resolve it? How can you show your sense of communion with every other worshipper today?
Thirdly, we look forward: This future looking aspect of the Communion service is not often prominent. Jesus gives it in Mt 26: 29. It draws on an imagery found in Ps 23:5 and Mt 22: 1- 13. One delighful picture of heaven is that it is a reunion dinner where Jesus is our host and our fellow guests are believers form all times and places. What wonderfull conversation we will have!
Let's look forward as we eat and drink today. Look forward to the time when Jesus will be all in all, when we shall flee earth's vain shadows and be gathered to the brightness of the Son.