The Whisper, Part One
Originally scheduled for January 25
I recently had the privilege of attending a
concert by the
Gary Bonner Singers during which they performed a song about
communion which I had never heard before. It is called
In the desert, in the wilderness of life,
I am searching for the
One Who searches me.
As I wander, hungry, thirsty, lost,
I hear the whisper of my name.
"Come to the table.
Your name is written on My hand.
Come to the table. Your name is
hidden in My heart.
Come to the table and live."
table, He prepares for me a place.
He redeems me, I am pardoned
by His grace.
He restores me with His rich and lavish love.
In His call, I hear the whisper of my name.
"Come to the
table. Your name is written on My hand.
Come to the table. Your
name is hidden in My heart.
Come to the table and live."
Composer/Arranger: Craig Courtney
Lyrics: Susan Bentall Boersma
For the next few weeks I will be using this
song as the basis for a series of communion meditations. If you’d
like to hear the song as sung, there is an excellent rendition
For those of you who have never spent any
significant amount of time in the desert, it may seem unreasonable
to use the desert as a metaphor for the spiritual wilderness of
life. After all, if you’re in the desert everything appears to be
quite clear. There is no mass of trees between you and your
destination; all you have to do is look around. But those of us who
have lived in the desert know that it is a subtle place, and its
disguises are subtle too. The colors seem in pale shades with very
fine differences in tone. When night comes, it is dark. I don’t mean
the dark with a shopping center glow on the horizon; I mean dark —
like sailors know when they are far from land. It is our spiritual
wilderness; subtle changes in color, disguises everywhere and
darkness coming frequently.
The wilderness of life is like that. Things
seem obvious to us. As one wit put it, “to every problem there is a
solution – neat, plausible and wrong.” Many of us are gifted at
finding that exact solution. How do we distinguish the right answer
from the answer which looks almost right? Especially if we don’t
have the experience of having been here, it’s difficult. This is why
you’re obviously bright ideas often have a subtle flaw that appears
gradually. If you want to turn around and go back the way you came,
you find that it’s no more clear than the way you got here. If
you’re like me, you need a Guide.
But how do I determine who is the right Guide?
Just because I’m actively seeking him, doesn’t mean that I really
know which guide I should be following. Many of us focus on the
guide that we make, or the guy that we imagine, or the guide that is
cheap and easy. The real test is not that you or I made, imagines or
found the guide. We tell the right guide by what he can do — and in
the spiritual wilderness that means that he must be able to
demonstrate that he has searched me. In the spiritual wilderness the
guide had better know my inmost being and my every fault. The
spiritual Guide knows every detail of the spiritual wilderness.
Christians meet this guide at the communion
table. At communion, you reveal to him your inmost being so that he
might search it and know it. If you do this, he will first show you
your fault and error. You, of course, must be listening if this is
to be of any good effect. But there is more to it than this. In
communion we see that our Guide has offered himself as the remedy
for our sins. It is not that Jesus knows the way in the wilderness —
it is that he
is the way, the truth and the life. Search your heart today,
open it up to the only guide who knows where you should be going –