Happy Mother’s Day all mums here this morning,
What’s Mother’s Day about? Mother’s Day is all about relationship. On Mother’s Day we gather alongside our mothers and celebrate. We say thanks. On Mother’s Day we put ourselves in our mothers’ shoes and empathise with all the pain they endured first through that whole childbirth thing, and then through all those sleepless nights when we screamed and cried and wanted to be fed and changed, and then through adolescence when we struggled for independence, and in high school when we learned to drive.
On Mother’s Day we proudly embrace our mothers and say, “This is the one who gave me life. This is the one without whom I wouldn’t exist. This is the one who has nurtured and cared for me, who loves me, who sacrificed so much, and who always wanted the best for me.” On Mother’s Day we acknowledge our union through birth to the one of whom we bear her name. We honour our father and mother, our relationship!
In the very least, Mother’s Day gives us a reference point to understanding what it means to be vitally linked or indebted to the life of another. Without our mothers none of us could have or enjoy the life we live. Without Jesus none of us could have or enjoy eternal life with God in his kingdom. Without our mother’s sacrifices we would probably have a different existence in this life. We’d possibly have nothing. Without Jesus’ sacrifice we could not exist in heaven for eternity. We would be lost. Through our mother’s nurturing and love we’ve become what we are today. Through Christ’s nurturing and love we are becoming all that God intends us to become. Mother’s Day gives us a point of reference for celebrating communion and for celebrating our relationship with Jesus Christ.
let’s think for a minute about the nature of our relationship with Jesus Christ. Our desire on Mother’s Day is to celebrate with our mothers physically present.
But many aren’t able to celebrate Mother’s day with their mothers or grandmothers. Does their physical absence make Mother’s Day any less significant? Absolutely not! Mother’s Day has just as much significance whether our mothers are physically present with us, or whether they are absent. Neither death, nor infirmity, nor physical separation can make this day any less special for us. In this sense, Mother’s Day transcends time, space, and even death.
In communion, it is not necessary for the Lord to be bodily present among us. We would love for the Lord to be physically present with us. But does his physical absence take away from or diminish the significance of communion? Absolutely not! Instead, the physical elements, the broken bread and fruit of the vine, remind us of a relationship that transcends time, space, and death.
In communion, we become acutely aware of our relationship with Jesus Christ. In communion, Jesus Christ’s presence becomes very real to us, just as if he were sitting in the seat next to us, physically present, walking with us, talking with us, sharing with us, or calling us by name. In communion, precious memories are bought up of a life that was sacrificed on our behalf, in another time and place some two thousand years ago. In communion, we know that Jesus who gave everything for us out of an abundant heart and deep love is here with us in spirit and in truth.
Communion is a gift from Jesus to the Church. The word communion to me brings up words like relationship, empathy, close association, and union. The Lord’s Supper assumes the existence of a relationship between us and The Lord that the crackers and juice represent. In the Lord’s Supper, Christ’s physical absence versus physical presence is irrelevant. This is because Jesus is spiritually present with us in every way as we take the broken bread and fruit of the vine that symbolize his broken body.
1 Corinthians 11:23-25 (NIV) says, “For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, ‘This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.’ In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.’ ”
The Lord’s Supper reminds us that we are vitally linked in relationship to Jesus Christ. He is Lord. He is our saviour. Without him, eternal life is impossible.
1 Corinthians 10:16 (NIV) says, “Is not the cup of thanksgiving for which we give thanks a participation in the blood of Christ? And is not the bread that we break a participation in the body of Christ?”
let us pray and participate