Yesterday, I sat next to my five year old during the worship service. Sebastian is curious about everything. He asks questions whenever a thought comes to mind. For at least the past year, Sebastian has been trying to figure out the Communion time during worship. He does not usually hear his daddy preach the main sermon because he gets to go to Junior Church after the "Kids Talk with the Preacher". There was no Junior Church yesterday so that everyone could stay and listen to our guest speaker, Richard Rider from Cell Block Ministries.
I don't do it every time, but when I do get to sit next to my youngest son at Communion time, I ask him if he knows what we are doing. He does not participate in drinking the cup of juice or eating the little cracker because he has not been baptized. When I asked him, "What does this mean?", he shrugged his shoulders and said he didn't know. When he was three years old, he would randomly tell people "Jesus died on the cross." He was very proud of himself when he contributed that information. Sadly, I haven't heard him say that lately.
While the Communion cups are being handed out, I tell my son quietly what everyone is doing at this time. I will point to the large cross hanging on the wall and tell him that Jesus died on the cross for our sins, the bad things that we do. I explain that the juice in the cup represents the blood that Jesus shed for us. I explain that the bread represents Jesus' body that was broken for us. My son asked, "That's not really his body. It's just bread, right?" I love that he is thinking all of this. I also tell him that he needs to be quiet during this time because people are praying to God, thanking Him for what Jesus has done for them.
How do you explain to others about the Bread and the Cup? The way Communion is served during our worship service may be very different than other fellowships. It is definitely different than how Jesus served it. I am glad that I am able to explain it to my own child. Do you say something else to yours? What does that bread and that cup mean to you? What do you do before you partake?
Luke 22:17-20 (English Standard Version)
17 And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he said, “Take this, and divide it among yourselves.18 For I tell you that from now on I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.”19 And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”20 And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood.