Monday, March 15, 2010

Threes

For Lent I gave up milk shakes, ice cream, and DVDs. These three objects seem harmless enough, but may be the biggest contributors to our national health care crisis. Virtually any offering seems small when compared against the broken body and shed blood of Jesus Christ. We do not remember Him often enough...

I attended three funeral services last week. The first was a beautiful, multi-sensory, and liturgical procession led lifelessly by a Catholic priest. The second was a quaint, thoughtful, and participatory event designed humbly by a seasoned Methodist preacher woman. The final was a grand, scripted, and honorable memorial pieced together by family and friends. Death comes in threes...

For our church workday, faithful members spread about the building and collectively worked on finishing our TO DO list. Painting projects, trim work, and cleaning transpired. I moved junk and clutter from magnetic collection spots to the shed or dumpster. Beneath our stage I found a basket. I brought it to the kitchen where some ladies were scrubbing. "Where does this go?" I asked. Pointing to the top of a cabinet, one lady said, "Put it up there. Then there will be three, and it will look intentional." I must have appeared confused because another lady added, "Good decor uses threes." Apparently, it makes design more interesting...

Jesus asks us to remember Him through the ordinance of communion. Washing the feet; raising the cup; breaking the bread. Three stages. Three poses. Trine, trifold, and trinitarian.

In a world where spiritual commitments are seasonal, death is certain, and beauty may be nothing more than a game of numbers, remembering Jesus is vital. Communion is a good mode of remembrance.

[Threefold communion] was a picture of membership in the household of Jesus. It memorialized His suffering that made the family possible, it was a visible expression of the relationship that He had created within the body, and it motivate the participants to a life of obedience and separation from the empty values of the world. (Scoles, Restoring the Household, 96)

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