Originally scheduled for August 25
One of the features of modern times is that
families are now often separated by great distances. This is
particularly troublesome to grandparents who dote upon their
grandchildren. The only people who benefit from the separation, as
far as I can tell, work for the United States Postal Service.
Grandparents can send a lot of packages.
One feature which is always included on such a
package is the return address. Since post offices began, they have
required a return address — or at least recommended it — on
everything they send. This is a humble admission on the part of the
Postal Service that they sometimes are unable to deliver your
package to the correct address. Sometimes things go astray. When
that happens, it is convenient to get the package back and try the
process all over again.
So the procedure is simple: if you can’t
deliver it as addressed, send it back to the sender. Then you can
start over again. This simple bit of sense is paralleled in our life
experience. People make a decision about which way they want their
life to go — and then find out that the destination is the wrong
one. For example:
Sometimes you decide that you need a
new spouse. Often enough, this comes from not having an appreciation
for antiques. We’d rather get a new one than fix up the old one.
If not a new spouse, then a new house
might be our desire. We might feel that living in a new neighborhood
with better schools, more parks and shade trees is just what we
Often enough, we think we need new
toys. That might be a new car, a new boat or — if you have money – a
new airplane. We usually find that it’s not new very long.
Once in a while it turns out that
what you really want is a new church — perhaps a place with the
preacher more to your taste.
Maybe what’s really needed is a new “you.” So
often we make the mistake of thinking that we can change everything
else before we need to change ourselves.
Communion is a time to examine the need for the
It is a time of self-examination. You
are look at yourself, and in all honesty decide whether or not you
need to change.
It is a time of repentance — a time
to say that I need to make amends, mend fences and rebuild
It is a time when you can ask for
help to do just those things.
Communion is a reminder that Christ has
provided the means to make your repentance and self-examination
effective. It is by his sacrifice that God forgives. This is the
help you need to make your repentance effective.
Therefore, when you approach communion you do
so in memory of Christ’s sacrifice. Sometimes the way to determine
whether or not you’re on the right path is to look backwards and see
where you’ve been. If the light of Christ is no longer shining on
your path, you’ve taken a wrong turn. Examine yourself, repent and
then remember what he has done for you.