Remember Him With Joy

In some fellowships, communion or the Lord’s Supper is a quiet, solemn occasion, at times almost funereal. I used to be afraid to talk before or after our ceremony in an effort to preserve the solemnity. It was almost worse than a funeral. But it’s not a funeral, even though we remember the One who died shortly after sharing a last supper with his friends. Jesus said whenever we partake of the Lord’s Supper, we are to remember him.

But how should we remember him? Should we wail and grieve like a group of paid mourners? Should we cry and be sad? Do we remember him by being guilt ridden and apologetic because our sins caused him to go through an awful death— a criminal’s death—on a Roman instrument of torture? Perhaps there’s a time and place for that—not the guilt, but a time of repentance and confession. Possibly that is best done in private, although sometimes those emotions come out when we think on Jesus’ death.

But what if we approach this time of remembrance from a different point of view? Jesus had a lot on his mind the night he sat down with his disciples to eat his last meal and talk with them one more time. He had spent three and a half years with these men and felt great affection for them. In Luke 22:15 he said, “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer” (NIV). In Matthew 26:18 he said he was planning to celebrate it with them. He knew he wouldn’t eat it again until the Kingdom of God.

Let’s remember him (Luke 22:19) as the son of God who came to earth to live among us and to be one of us. He’s the One who gave us, in the form of his person, freedom from the law, the chains of sin and the oppression of death. He gave us freedom from fear of the future, freedom to know the Father and freedom to be called children of God.

Let’s be joyful as we remember the One God anointed to preach good news to the poor, who was sent to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and to release the prisoners from darkness. He came to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor, to comfort all who mourn and to provide for those who grieve. He bestows on us a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair (Isaiah 61).

Jesus endured the cross for the joy set before him. It’s hard to imagine joy so great. It certainly was not human or earthly joy. It had to be the joy of being God! The joy of heaven! The joy of eternity! It’s joy we can’t begin to imagine or describe!

This is the One we remember—the One who changed our grief into joy and who invites us to share his life, now and in eternity. Let’s remember him with smiles on our faces, a shout of joy on our lips and with light hearts filled with the delight of knowing Christ Jesus our Lord!

Comments (1)

Jaime ZapataApril 28th, 2010 at 7:15 pm

Thanks, Tammy, for the reminder of God’s Joy in Christ. Indeed this is the way we should be because the King of kings has overcome the world for us!

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