Therefore encourage one another and build each other up.... —I Thessalonians 5:11 (NIV)
On world communion Sunday, our grandson Shawn came with us to church. Eleven years old, he looked handsome in his fresh-pressed chinos and sport shirt. He was very proud that this would be his first opportunity to take communion at our church. I thought back to when I first took this step in my faith in
I was wearing my first suit, a secondhand garment my mother had bought from a peddler who visited us regularly. My Aunt Lillian had taken it in so it wouldn’t fall off my thin fourteen-year-old frame, and for the next few years she would take it out as I grew into it. She’d been less successful with the white shirt that hung crooked across my shoulders under the tie I’d carefully knotted. But I didn’t care. I was so proud to have reached this milestone in my life. I had studied the church’s teachings and the Bible and had read how Jesus instituted the communion service so that we would always remember Him. I walked up to the altar that day thinking I’d never be the same again.
More than seventy years have passed since that day, but I have never lost that sense of excitement. The clothes have changed (I finally grew out of that secondhand suit) and my situation has changed (I’ve been able to buy plenty of brand-new suits), but every time I receive communion, I thank God for the presence of Jesus in my life.
“Do this in the remembrance of me,” Christ said, and for nearly two thousand years, people have followed Him.
Now it was Shawn’s turn.
Heavenly Father, what an honor it is to be welcomed to Your table. —Oscar Greene
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