A communion meditation

An elder statesman of the Restoration Movement—one who has lived through about half of its history personally—wrote of a story of surrender–of a specific account of Steve Jobs’s death on NBC’s Evening News with Brian Williams.  The report was that (and I quote) . . .

Steve Jobs’s sister had revealed that her brother, while dying, said in an upbeat manner — and these were his last words — Oh, Wow!   He went on to repeat this interjection twice: Oh, Wow! Oh, Wow!    He was apparently conscious, lucid, and fully aware of what he was saying and what was going on.  Here was the co- founder of Apple, the ultimate entrepreneur, and “the secular prophet” as the Wall Street Journal described him, who supposedly did not believe in any reality beyond this world, crying out affirmations of something transcendent.  A cry of Wow!  is akin to a shout of Hallelujah!

… In a recent commencement address at Stanford University, he talked to the students about death, describing it as “Life’s change agent.” …

He also warned them against being trapped by dogma, which he saw as blindly following other people’s thinking. He urged that they be their own unique selves, follow their own dreams, and listen to their own inner voice, heart, and intuition.  It was an appeal for an authentic and meaningful life.  It was as if he might have urged them to be prepared to face life’s mysteries — the wonders that are beyond our reach — and to have the heart and mind to unashamedly cry out Wow!

Now, I would say that “Hallelujah” is a good deal above and beyond “Wow,” but I get the point here.  There is something beyond.  Something wonderful.  Something transcendent.  Something to be lived for beyond the present and the things right in front of our faces.

For us, that “Something” is a Who.  And that Who is the One we are called to give reverent attention to in the passage from Revelation—Jesus as the Worthy One, the Lamb without blemish, offered for us.  And this is the very One we are called to worship now.  It’s a redundant expression, but I’ll repeat it here anyway:  “Come, let us worship and bow down” … here … today.

. . .

“This is the Lord’s Supper.”  And in the Lord’s Supper we are called away to a reality beyond ourselves.  Yes, in a sense we are called to be fully present, right now, bringing ourselves as we are, with all our dirt and distractions.  But we are also called away from the observable into the realm of the eternal.  We are called to worship this Lord, this Jesus.  We are inspired not to regurgitate “thankyouforthesegiftsweareabouttoreceive” or some other memorized mumblings … but to express intentionally, consciously, lucidly, with the vision of the Lamb at the right hand of the Father rising in our spirits, “Wow.  Hallelujah!  Praise to God.”

It’s an opportunity to worship.  This is the Lord’s Supper.”

Maybe you remember the first time you communed in this way.  Maybe you can’t even remember the last time.  They have all been significant.

“This is the Lord’s Supper.”

Perhaps a bit strange that we eat “supper” in the morning hours, and equally strange that the morsels and thimbles are the sizes they are.  Nevertheless, despite our tradition-bound handling of an important spiritual legacy, I’m convinced that in eating and drinking, we have a unique opportunity to be with Jesus in grateful adoration—in worship.  And in this communal love shown, we can please our Lord, Jesus, the Christ—who in an upper room near Jerusalem first did this with His closest followers.  “This is the Lord’s Supper.”

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