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Communion Meditations (2012)

Party Crashing

Originally scheduled for March 11

Every mother of a teenage girl has heard the lament: "EVERYONE is going to that party."

·         The definition of "bad" in that situation is this — your mother won't let you go.

·         The definition of "worst" in that situation is this — you are not invited

It is at this point that the temptation to become a party crasher arises. Your heart aches to join, yet you fear the social consequences of being found out. Your entire social life now depends on one thing: who was invited to the party?

We mass the same thing of Jesus Christ. Just who does Jesus invite his party? There is no explicit list, but we can get some idea from the history of those with whom Jesus partied. One of the chief accusations against him was that he was "a friend of winebibbers and gluttons." In short, he partied hearty. He went to places that the politically correct of the day just would never go. He was friends with people who were at the bottom of the social scale: tax collectors, prostitutes, adulterers and in general the outrageous, the unwelcome and even the handicapped. The beggars, the blind, the deaf, and pretty much anyone else who just didn't fit in were welcome with Jesus of Nazareth. In fact, it seems that Jesus defined his own version of "in."

But everyone knows that if you are "in", you at least need to know the secret handshake. Or perhaps the cool phrase of the day. There has to be something that defines those who are in from those who are out. We are now come to the ritual which portrays that difference, that definition. To understand this you need to know the difference between those who are in Christ and those who are not. The difference is in one word: love.

That is the core of the meaning of the ritual we know as communion. It represents to us the sacrifice Christ made on the cross, the sacrifice which was made because of the great love God has for us. When we partake in this ritual we proclaim that we are those who are in Christ. The price paid was very great, but the invitation goes out to all who will accept him as Lord and Savior. If that's you, you're in. This is the time we remember our Lord, who loved us into the kingdom of God.

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