Gratitude Sunday: the call to communion (a holy vortex)

We helped serve communion at church Sunday. It’s the kind of church that hands you the bread-body, and you dip it in the juice-blood.

I said, “The body of Christ, broken for you…The body of Christ, broken for you.” Over and over again to each face.

How many times do we repeat it before the mysterious reality sinks itself into our shoddy bones and weakened hearts?

“The body of Christ. Totally broken. Just for you to stand here today, just for you to lay prostrate, but safe. Just for your everything to be consumed in love.”

We practiced gratitude Sunday, wrote words and phrases across white butcher paper with pink and purple markers, except for little Olivia, who brought her own crayons along instead.

I’ve never liked the phrase “practice makes perfect,” although I’m sure it’s true. Actually, I’ve just never liked cliches in general.

Because we forget what they mean, forget their significance, that the bread I am chewing, the piece I soaked until it turned purple, is more than just bread.

The words I say, “The body of Christ broken for you,” and the way Trav says in that passionate way of his, “The blood of Christ spilled for you,”— it’s all so much more than words.

It’s like some sort of holy vortex.

When we take the bread, dip it, pause, eat, we are brought into Jesus, into the depths of His heart, into the enduring radiance of His kindness. We are pulled to the center, carried in by body and blood and all that is holy, all that is forgiving and multiplying of grace upon grace.

We light the Thanksgiving candles, we smile as the flame dances over the white wax and brightens the glass around it.

We call ourselves thankful because we call ourselves whole, in every bit of our brokenness.

All grateful thanks to that little bit of bread, that little soak of purple, that transforms our very hearts and calls us into life for ever and ever.

Amen.

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