One of our core ministry leaders did a communion meditation last Sunday and I was so impacted by what he shared that I wanted to share it with you. His name is Errol Schroeder and he’s a great thinker and writer.
I love his unique take on communion.
Here you go:
Have you ever come to church just looking for an excuse to quit? Probably not, but I have. And just in case that’s where you’re at right now, don’t leave now and say that God spoke to you during service telling you to quit church, because He didn’t.
Here’s how it goes for me…It starts early in the week. Things at the job aren’t going well. I’m grateful to have a job, but sometimes it seems like it’s really a secret CIA experiment to see just how much anguish the human soul can endure. Toss on the pile some kid or family issues. Pressurize it with personal finance dilemmas. Wed/Thurs, check out the news. The descent continues. It doesn’t seem like anyone in the government can do the right thing. Lack of accountability, greed, selfishness and entitlement attitudes rule the day. And world peace is nowhere on the radar, despite it being the prime directive of every beauty pageant contestant since time began.
By Friday I am seriously bummed out, so much so that I am thinking of doing something drastic… like starting to listen to country music.
Then it comes to me, I know, I’ll quit going to church. Oh yeah. That will show ‘em. I just need an excuse, justification by rationalization. Let’s see, I’ll go to church and it will be the same people who are always there. Then those kids in Uptown worship, they’ll be out of control and not pay attention. And worship in big church… they won’t do any songs that I think we should. And that preacher, he for sure will say something to tick me off, step on my toes. He just doesn’t understand my life. I don’t covet that car – I REALLY NEED it, (to bolster my self-esteem).
So Sunday morning I get up, get dressed, get my attitude on, get all bristled up for the big showdown. On the drive into church, Darlene will mandate that we listen to Christian music, something about me needing it. Yeah, whatever. Purely coincidental though, as we make the weekly pilgrimage from Windsor to Greeley, my deflector shields start to drop and I already know deep down inside that my issue isn’t with church; what it is is a separation from God. But that surely is God’s fault, not my own doing, or lack of doing.
And I get to church and sure enough, I see the same people who I see every week. And even though I may not speak with all of you, or even know all your names, just seeing you here gives me a sense of stability and correctness. And then in Uptown, what I thought would be annoying chaos is really youthful exuberance, pure energy, and one of the kids will say something and I realize that they are getting the message. And then off to big church and the “official” worship time. Maybe it’s a song that we’ve done a bunch of times before or a song that I’ve heard on the radio before but it catches me off guard. But most often it’s just the energy and sincerity of the worship that draws me in. And if I close my eyes at that moment, I can see Jesus standing there, leaning on the cross, arms crossed, kind of rolling his eyes and he says, “What are you doing? Why do we have to play this cat and mouse game? I paid too high of price for you to hold me at arm’s length, at your convenience, especially when you know that we’ll end up right here, together.”
Boom! There you have it; encounter and transformation. And it all culminates with this time of communion; a planned opportunity to “accidentally” stumble upon our Lord and spend some quality one on one time with Him. Maybe you’ve been communing with God all week, or maybe you’re like me and have to be tackled from behind; either way let’s take the next few moments to lay our woes and wonders at the foot of the cross and thank him for being there for us, both at the cross and now. And you know what, if the preacher man steps on my toes later, it’s because I need it and God knows it.
Jesus, let me pray for those like me, the hard-hearted and bull-headed. Thank you for taking a chisel to our minds and hearts to open us up to your love, your sacrifice and making us aware of your constant proximity.
Amen, Errol. Amen!