I have been watching a Lenten series produced by the brothers of the Society of Saint John the Evangelist. I was struck by something said and it clarified my feeling about some things in the church.
The quote is: We reduce the symbols (used by the church) so much that they lose life.
The reason that this resonated with me is that some churches (including mine) give communion in the form of ?bread? and wine. The wine is real but the bread is in the form of dry, tasteless wafers. The bread has been reduced until it has lost its life. I was so glad to find the right comment to make when discussing this. We can, and should, use real bread! Some could be made gluten free for those with Celiac disease.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways, says the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
Isaiah 55:8-9 NRSV
How often we create God to be what we want. Each of us has an image of God and I wouldn’t be surprised it they were all different. If we were raised as Christians our earliest images were probably Jesus with the children or some other pleasant and kind fatherly image. As we grow that image can change along with us. The more we learn the more we alter that image. We have to be careful to read the Bible and pay attention to the words of Jesus. His statements about and the parables give us an image to think about.
Here, in the middle of Advent, I had the most moving experience. Today in church we went forward to take communion. there was a tiny little girl next to me (about two). She saw everyone near her holding out their hands to receive the bread and held out hers too. It was so touching to look down next to me and see those small hands held out for the bread of communion. The Priest came by and put bread in her hands. She smiled but was very serious about what she was doing. She waited with us and watched her mother dip her bread into the wine and then did the same.
I wish I could have taken a picture but I have that image in my mind and in my heart. And a little child shall lead us. Today I felt the power of that child’s actions and we have another child on the way…The Christ child.