Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of September 26, 2010
- Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of September 26, 2010
As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho Press,
here is a selection from our book of daily devotions,
"Living as the Beloved: One Day at a Time," by the
Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.
Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
meditation. We hope you will be blessed.
Thank you for forwarding this to your friends.
Take and eat
"When it was evening, Jesus took his place with the
twelve; and while they were eating, he said, 'Truly
I tell you, one of you will betray me.' And they
became greatly distressed and began to say to him
one after another, 'Surely not I, Lord?' He answered,
'The one who has dipped his hand into the bowl with
me will betray me. The Son of Man goes as it is
written of him, but woe to that one by whom the Son
of Man is betrayed! It would have been better for
that one not to have been born.' Judas, who betrayed
him, said, 'Surely not I, Rabbi?' He replied, 'You
have said so.' While they were eating, Jesus took
a loaf of bread, and after blessing it he broke it,
gave it to the disciples, and said, 'Take, eat; this
is my body.' Then he took a cup, and after giving
thanks he gave it to them, saying, 'Drink from it,
all of you; for this is my blood of the covenant,
which is poured out for many for the forgiveness
of sins. I tell you, I will never again drink of
this fruit of the vine until that day when I drink
it new with you in my Father�s kingdom.' When they
had sung the hymn, they went out to the Mount of
All the gospels bring us to this remarkable final
Passover meal Christ ate with his disciples the
night before his crucifixion. Christian churches
have called this meal a variety of names, "Holy
Communion," "the Eucharist," and "the Last Supper."
It is a sacrament that has been reclaimed by every
generation of believers.
All the disciples were deeply saddened at Jesus'
words. They could not understand who the betrayer
would be. Jesus had known from the very beginning
of his ministry when he handpicked the twelve
disciples. At this holy symbolic meal, Jesus gave
Judas Iscariot permission to leave the table in
order to betray him (John 13:30). Even at the
table, Judas had a chance to change his mind and
dedicate himself to Jesus. Instead, Judas allowed
evil to lead him into unholy actions.
Christian Protestant and Catholic churches often
differ on how to remember Christ through this meal.
Some insist formal church membership and
denominational identity are required to partake
of communion. There are churches who offer this
meal daily and others only on a monthly, quarterly,
or even annual basis. Certain denominations prohibit
"practicing" gay and lesbian Christians from this
table. Others insist women must take this meal
with their heads covered and believe only men are
allowed to serve the bread and wine. I have known
youth pastors who have served this meal with soda
pop and potato chips in an attempt to be "culturally
relevant." Regrettably, bitter disagreements can
exist among Christians when it comes to sharing this
holy meal. Religion can be terribly divisive.
The table of God, however, is bigger than our
differences. Everyone is invited. Jesus simply
said, "Take and eat." Seekers, skeptics, doubters,
betrayers, loyal disciples of all sexual orientations
are invited to this meal.
Whenever possible, experience this sacrament in the
community of believers. But through the centuries,
many have shared this sacred meal in the privacy of
their homes and at retreat centers. Begin by
preparing your heart in advance to receive divine
grace and blessing, allowing some scheduled time
for silent listening to God before reading your
selected scriptures. You can include other readings
for contemplation perhaps even today's reflection!
Give yourself some quiet time for personal meditation
and prayer. Write down your thoughts in a journal.
Then take a bit of bread or crackers and some juice
or wine. Ask God to consecrate these simple elements
as you remember what Christ has so lovingly done for
you. Give thanks to God. Meditate in silence and
sit at the table with Jesus. Enjoy the sweet communion
and friendship he offers you. It is that simple.
Bless us as we partake of this holy meal, God.
Help us see Jesus as we sit at the table. Amen.
Grace and peace,
Chi Rho Press
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