Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take it; this is my body.”
As a little girl, Olesya often observed holy communion at her grandmother’s church. As a young adult, though, she drifted away from the religious life of her grandmother. But somehow she was still interested in what communion was all about. She called our radio talk-show to find out more about the sacrament. During the conversation I had a chance not only to respond to her questions but also share the gospel of Jesus with her.
The sacrament of the Lord’s Supper is a time for thanksgiving. We gather around the Lord’s table to be vividly reminded of what Jesus did on our behalf.
During his last supper with his disciples Jesus used vivid images—bread and wine. Bread is still a popular food item in Middle Eastern cuisine—and around the world. After giving thanks to God, Jesus broke the bread. It’s a profoundly symbolic act pointing to his upcoming death on the cross. Then he gave the pieces of bread to his disciples: “Take it; this is my body.” The bread is a symbol of his body, broken for us.
This is the gospel story in a nutshell. When we participate in the Lord’s Supper, we are still offered the bread that points us to Jesus’ body. We are encouraged to turn to him and partake in his sacrifice for us with humility and thanksgiving.
Father, thank you for your Son’s body that was broken for us. Remind us daily of what Jesus did for us on the cross. In his name we pray. Amen.
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