How many times have I come to this table? How many times have I taken this bread, blessed it, broken it, and given it out? How many times have I told the story of Jesus sharing the Passover meal with his disciples in that upper room? My theology, my understanding of God, is centered around this table. My ecclesiology, my understanding of church and community, is centered around this table. I have preached sermons about this table. I have composed songs about this table. I have written fiction and poetry about this table. So I should be able to crank out a sermon for Maundy Thursday with no problem, right? But you know, it doesn't work that way. In preparation for tonight's message, I have been pondering this table, reflecting on this loaf, contemplating this cup, and I realize: I have absolutely no idea what it means.So began my sermon for Maundy Thursday. Somehow it all came together for a message that the few who gathered there seemed to find meaningful. But how I struggled with it.
It's hard to preach on communion when you feel as if you are not in communion with the folks gathered, with the tradition, with Church, with God.
Don't get me wrong, I feel tremendously blessed to have such rich communion in my life - with my partner, with our friends, with our COMMUNity, with my family. But I just don't get that from the church or from religion these days. For years, my spirituality has been shaped around communion. So with the face of communion changing in my life, I need to figure out what that means in terms of my spirituality. Or if I even want to articulate my sense of communion in spiritual terms anymore.