Wednesday, May 06, 2009

What We Take For Granted – What Is Granted Without Merit

Three things happened to me within 15 minutes that are still affecting me today. Those of you that know me know how deeply I feel about getting back to our Methodist roots where grace and the sacraments are concerned. After Sunday, I feel even more strongly about it.

Two men and I took communion to the unwillingly absent last Sunday. One of them was a man who was near death, another a man recovering from heart surgery, and the third was a couple where the husband has Alzheimer’s. The gentleman who was near death needed our assistance to partake – we were humbled beyond measure. We joked with the man that was recovering from surgery that we were there for “Last Rites,” and he laughed harder than we did. And the couple we served were grateful as well, the wife with words and the man with a peaceful expression after drinking from the cup.

When I take communion to older members who remember the older communion liturgy, I usually serve them with these words: “Take and eat this in remembrance that Christ died for thee, and feed on him in thy heart by faith with thanksgiving.” We were met with tears each time, which brought us close to tears as well.

I pray that we need not wait until death or our last years to finally figure out that God grants us as much grace as we need – if we’ll only open our arms to receive it. I know that I serve as a minister to all of these folks we took communion to on Sunday. But truth be told, on this particular Sunday I was as much ministered to as I was a minister. These people have a faith far beyond my own – and I pray that mine might increase each day.

Jesus, remember me, when you come into your kingdom,
Jesus, remember me, when you come into your kingdom.
- Jacques Berthier, Taize Community, 1981


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