Once a month, on the first Sunday of the month, I gather with the people of Cannon Beach Community Church to celebrate in worship the sacrament of Holy Communion. Of course, we can commune with God night and day, anytime, anyplace, by opening our hearts to God’s presence, enjoying God’s company in the middle of the night, over a cup of coffee in the morning, while on a walk, or in the midst of our workday. But, one of my favorite times in worship is when we gather in the middle of a service of worship to celebrate the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper. Just like that evening in Emmaus, as recorded in Luke 24, Jesus is the host at this Table, we are welcomed guests. We come because Jesus invites. As our Lord breaks bread, gives thanks, and offers to us his grace upon grace in this Bread, our eyes are opened, and we finally recognize him, risen, victorious, joyful, alive, majestic. Then, we look back and remember all he taught us along the road. “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?” (Luke 24:32)
If it has been months or even years since you’ve received Holy Communion, I encourage you to enter into that holy place of grace this month, to open your heart to God’s love, and find a local congregation such as Cannon Beach Community Church on the first Sunday of the month, and celebrate the sacrament of Holy Communion. Prior to receiving Communion, take time to reflect upon the state of your soul before God. Anything within you that is an obstacle between you and God, call out to Christ for help in removing this. Confess to Christ any sins, shortcomings, burdens upon your soul. One of the other. Ask for God’s freely given gift of forgiveness. Offer a simple child-like prayer: “Lord Jesus, come into my heart again. Thank you for dying on the cross for me. Forgive me of all my sins. I love you. Live with me and show me your everlasting way.” Amen. Then, go forward to receive God’s precious gift of Holy Communion, enjoying intimate time with God through Jesus Christ, who opened up the new and living way through his body and blood. One of the other beautiful names for Holy Communion is the Eucharist, a Greek word meaning “thanksgiving”. We give thanks to God for this indescribable gift of the Eucharist, Christ’s life offered to us that we too may live eternally!
All photos by David Robinson except cover image which is from https://oracularcook.wordpress.com/tag/bread/