By Becky Ahlberg
Do you remember your first Communion? The first time you held the bread and cup and accepted the invitation to this table offered by the Lord himself upon your baptism and commitment to him? How old were you? Where were you? Who else was there? For some of us, that moment was decades ago; for some others, it might be this very day. For all of us, it is a call to remembrance.
We’re called to remember our commitment. We’re called to remember our community here in this place and to remember Christians around the world. And we’re called to remember Christ, our Savior. This is how Jesus asked us to remember:
The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.” For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes (1 Corinthians 11:23-26).
When Jesus spoke those words, he was among his closest friends, those who knew him well and were committed to following him. Jesus knew they would need each other as never before in the days ahead, and even though they still didn’t understand the full extent of his words, they grasped that it was a significant moment.
And for years to come, every time they gathered around the table, Jesus’ friends remembered the history-changing events of those days. It was a personal memory, a shared memory, and a transformative memory.
We may not have been there, but this table is spread to help prompt a transformative memory in each of us. We are called to embrace that memory of our connection to Christ and to each other. Ultimately, in this moment, we are to embrace our connection to God, because of what Christ did for each of us. His body broken for us, his blood spilled for us: an unforgettable gift.
So pause now and remember. And as you do, look around the room and join with the others in their remembrance, and let us together proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
Becky Ahlberg serves as executive director of My Safe Harbor in Anaheim, California.