“Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him.”
(John 6:53-56 NIV)
Whenever I eat communion, I think about this verse, but not in the way that you would think. I was raised Catholic, and even now communion is very very important to me. I even have trouble considering Pez communion real communion, but I know it’s not the shape of the bread that matters, really.
When I eat the bread and drink the juice, I think of the two things that are going into me, and what I want to come out of my life. When I eat the communion bread, I pray that the life of Jesus, what He did in His flesh, would be in me and in my life.
When I drink the juice, I pray that the death of Jesus, the blood that was spilled out for this sins of all people, would would be in me and in my life. I pray that the death of Jesus would be a present reality all of the time in my activities.
It’s not a condition of salvation. If I never have communion again for the next 50 years I’ll be ok. But it is a little ceremony, a ritual, that helps us remember where we get our life from.
I’m in no hurry to get my kids to eat it. Just as there wouldn’t have been any power in Peter grabbing Jesus by the heal and biting him in the calf, there isn’t any power in us eating our Pez communion bread. At the same time, there is no other prayer time for me, when I feel as close as can be to the Father, as when I’m in a monastery w/ a bunch of monks, eating communion in big flat disks and drinking real wine. Go figure.