Well, it was sunny and warm for a little while anyway...
Senses and Remembrances
A few weeks ago Christy and I were getting all dressed up to go out on a date and as I was walking past her in the house something strange happened… I was instantaneously transported back nine years to the first few weeks of our dating life! All of a sudden, without planning it and without any warning I was 18 years old again and falling in love… then Norah screamed, Anna laughed and I was back in the present, wondering what in the world had just happened to me. Then, as Christy walked past me, I figured it out… She was wearing the same perfume she used to wear in those early days of our life together and the tiniest whiff of that unmistakable aroma took me back in time.
Have you ever driven past the house you grew up in just to see it? Have you ever listened to an old song you used to love and felt like you were fourteen again? Have you ever eaten something that tastes exactly like your mom used to make? Have you ever walked in your old high school and realized that even though you never once thought about it when you were there, it smells just the same as it did back then? For some reason our memories are so connected to our senses that certain sensations can trigger recollections that are so strong we actually feel as if we are right back there, reliving those moments.
Well, today is Good Friday. And on this day 2,000 years ago God who became man shed His blood for us, dying in our place to pay the penalty for all of our wrong. This is a day where we stop for a while to do something very important. Today is a day to remember. For those who believe in Jesus… for those who love Him and have put their hope and trust in Him, everyday is a day to remember His sacrifice, but today is special, because it was on this day all those years ago that it actually happened… it was on this day that the sun went out at noon and Jesus drank the cup of the full wrath of God on our behalf. It is very important that we remember Him… that we remember His sacrifice and never get too far away from it, because it is our salvation and our hope.
The night before Jesus went to the cross He wanted to make sure His friends would never forget what He was going to do for them, so He gave them a way to remember it... Luke 22 says, “And He took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way, after the supper, He took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.”
This was and is a lesson for the senses… to feel your fingers tense around the bread as you break it, tearing the fibers as His body was broken... to hear the wine being poured out in the cup, just as His blood was poured out, listening to the way the pitch changes as it fills up… to smell the bread which is like no other smell, just as His life was an aroma of perfection rising up to the pleasure of the Father’s heart… to see the color of the wine like the arresting and shocking color of bright red blood… and to taste them both in your mouth before swallowing… to be nourished not by calories, proteins or vitamins in the meal, but to be nourished by the remembering.
In communion, Jesus has given us a time warp for our hearts. Taking is remembering, in which your senses can transport you right back to the place where you know in the deepest places of your spirit that God loves you and has loved you unto death.