Disclaimer: I'm not trying to impose my personal faith or beliefs on anyone. I'm not claiming to know how to love perfectly nor tell you how to. I simply wanted to share something on my journey that really encouraged me. Much love :)
The Lord's table. Communion. Reverence. Tradition. Change. If you have a christian faith, these words you relate to. In our church growing up, we'd take communion once a month. I thought it was cool when I was old enough to get grape juice and a cracker! Especially if the pastor was long winded. But very few times do we sit and reflect on what it means.
I talk to God, Jesus, my angels and even Holy Spirit every day. I speak with them like They are my friends over for a visit. Sometimes I'm driving and talking to them. Sometimes I argue with Them and try to win my own argument. Because I am human. Because He is my best friend. Now, I still make mistakes and I've failed may times. I've fallen short many times. I have succeeded many times. But in each and every time, I felt Their presence. Sometimes in the form of 'Junella....what are you doin?' 'Junella...you did amazing today!' 'Junella...I'm not impressed with you' 'Junella...this is the vision I have for you and how I want you to do it'. You get the picture. Just because I love Him and have a faith doesn't mean I always take the time to listen. And sometimes those decisions hurt. Sometimes I surprise myself and make good decisions and achieve His mission. And it doesn't mean I don't get to know Him because of mistakes I've made. I'm not Him; I'm not perfect. You don't stop eating cheeseburgers because someone's actions or words while eating one weren't pretty. Try the delicious cheeseburger.
Last night, I woke up in the night and the passage 1 Cor. 11: 23-28 came to mind. The Lord's Supper. Communion. Now, I was exhausted and He picks middle of the night to talk to me. I wasn't impressed. I literally said out loud, 'Not now Jesus I'm sleeping. I need my sleep'. He said to think about the words in this passage. I'm like yeah, yeah....and I quickly thought about them. Then I said ok, good night now. Nope - I still had that passage in my head. So I recited it slowly to myself. I was so unimpressed about being awake that when He showed me that it says' 'He had given thanks'....I said out loud to my surprise, 'oh not this gratitude crap again Jesus...' But, I wanted sleep so I thought fine! I'll read the darn passage!!
I'm going to pick out and highlight how for the first time I read it:
'I received from the Lord....' I realized that this is His gift to me when I need wisdom, His help, His strength. I'm promised I'll receive direct from Him.
'The Lord Jesus on the night He was betrayed..' Even Jesus himself was betrayed and suffered hurt. This man was flawless. The purest. The most loving and gentle. And no matter how incredible He was He was still betrayed. By those closest to Him. They didn't take the time to get their facts straight. They chose to get embarrassed by associating with Him when asked by the asses...I mean 'masses'...
Side note: 'Asses of the Masses' - Definition: 'those people who think they can inflict harm by bullying you by attempting to inject their poisonous opinions into the mindless followers all around them. My personal belief is that if I'm around someone who spreads gossip...I look at them and know they are weak and not capable of being a leader. They can only feel big by manipulating others just like them.' Don't pay attention to them.
'When He (Jesus himself - not someone else) had given thanks..' Oh... yup, that gratitude thing again. He had to give His own thanks.
'He broke it' and said 'This is My body which is for you...' He had to physically break bread to have strength of His father.
'Do this in remembrance of Me. He had to 'ACT' , 'DO' This was actually a command He stated. DO THIS in remembrance of Me. He wasn't suggesting.
'In the same manner..' implies it needed to be redone. Again. That act of faith.
'After supper He took the cup'... Indicating there was another point of time He needed to repeat same process.
'New covenant of My blood'. This is His promise we are made whole, new and clean in his sight. People won't see it or care, but He does. So walk that out.
'Do this whenever you drink it, in remembrance of Me'. Another command to 'DO', 'ACT'.
'You proclaim the Lord's death until He comes..' WE are His voice. We proclaim it. Not Him.
It even follows up after in verse 27 and 28 to tell us that when taking holy reverend communion to examine yourself, judge yourself and forgive. If we listen and do this often and truly reflect on these words, we will regularly be checking up on ourselves, our lives, our actions, our words.
Here's 10 points I saw to apply to my life from this passage:
1. God's gifts are always there. We just need to receive them.
2. Betrayal happened even to Him. His most loved disciple Peter, hurt Him the most. Jesus represents the one who got hurt. Peter represents those who make mistakes. In life we are both.
3. Give thanks in everything. Notice it's one of the first things He states. A thankful heart positions you to be open to good things. Miracles. Change.
4. We need to first break so we can be put back together.
5. When we are weak, He is strong. He is our strength and carries us as we are healing and rebuilding.
6. Remember your faith, and remember Him. Take time out of your day to forget your problems and just breathe.
7. Consistency. You will need to do this again and again at different levels and seasons in your life. It's not a one time dose. Watch your words that YOU speak. You are the one who controls your destiny. He carries you, loves you and supports you no matter what you decide.
Sometimes I envision my angels putting in for transfer.....sometimes I see Jesus cringe and go 'ooohh.....that ones gonna hurt'. 'Angels are nodding yup....yup, and lucky us we get to help fix it...
And when He says, 'Let Me help you' I get stubborn and tell Him I got it. And He's saying 'oh yeah....you are doing a real super job' (gives me a sarcastic thumbs up). Sometimes I make it worse before it's better. I'm learning. Then I finally say something like 'well don't just stand there...I need help!' And He sighs and says 'kids!'
8. You are a new creation. Don't let people label you.
9. ACT. DO. Take a step. Notice Jesus was only instructing them and doing it for Himself. The disciples had to listen and take communion and reflect on their own. No one could do that for them.
10. Share the good news. Once you've come out of adversity....share it with people. Help someone else in their struggle.
I want to encourage you, whatever you are dealing with, whatever you have come out of, you always have someone in your corner to support you in your journey, help you change and grow through your adversity. You just have to accept it :)