Today is January 7, 2020. Christmas and New Years are over. It is a crazy special time, with special decorations, special gifts under the tree, special get togethers, special events, and even special food. Turkey with ‘all the fixins’.
I was thinking about that today as I read my devotional. She pointed out that Communion – a special time where we are to be deliberate about giving thanks – is centered around the most common of foods…bread. It doesn’t get more simple or mundane than that, does it?
The kids get sick of sandwiches in their lunch because it is boring and occurs 5 days a week. Maybe even 6, because often on Sundays we have what we call “Buns ‘n Junk” for lunch…fancy sandwiches because it is on a bun this time! Bread is a staple with most meals. So ordinary.
I think it is interesting that for Communion, Jesus didn’t pick something more special, less mundane…he didn’t pick something unusual, or rare or something saved only for special times.
This past Christmas day, I didn’t make turkey for Ted’s parents when they came over. I decided to make the day special by making a meal that the kids LOVE and always request, but I hardly make because it is too much work! It is a special fried chicken, with homemade french fries, and Jell-O (because who doesn’t love Jell-O?) The chicken and fries are a lot of work so I often just save it for special occasions.
Why didn’t Jesus pick something more like that for Communion? Something that would stick out more? Be more memorable? Feel more special? Really? Just bread? No fixins?
Could this have been deliberate?
Not every day comes with fixins. Not everyday is Christmas. Not everyday do you go looking for a new puppy. Not every day do you drive to Florida…go to Disney. Not every day is a hockey tournament where the crowd is 10 times more excited and loud. Not every day is dance competition day where you finally put on a show to win it. Not everyday is marathon day where you feel the sweet taste of accomplishment…Not every day do you get a personal best.
Those are days in my life that I would consider to come with all the fixins.
Some days are just bread days…just ‘buns ‘n junk’. The days where you get up to go to work…to do 5 massages, just like you did the day before. The days where you drive your kids to their different activities, just like you did the day before. The evenings where you lie beside your husband in bed, just like you did for the last 3 years. The mornings where you wake up to 4 kids who are YOURS, just like you have the last 3 years. The tiny kisses goodnight, just like every other kiss goodnight since the day they were born. The “mom, watch this!”, just like the other million “mom, watch this!” you’ve heard. The 3 meals a day you prep, just like you’ve been prepping for what feels like eternal days leading up to this one. The 5 loads of laundry you do today, just like you’ve been doing for years. The sadness or emptiness you wake up to, just like the countless other times you’ve woken up to that.
Bread. These are bread days.
And yet, this is what Jesus wanted us to center our thanks around.
“Whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup” 1 Corinthians 11:26
Today will be filled with bread. Loaf upon loaf. Maybe a bun here or there. May I see them as things to give thanks for.
That I still have little – or big – lips to kiss every day. That I still get to do someone’s laundry because I get to have kids and a husband…That I get to go to work and laugh with clients with whom I have built amazing relationships with over the years…who choose to come back and see me. That a little someone thinks I’m so great, they want ME to be their audience for whatever it is they’ve discovered. That I have a husband and kids to cook for…when I was a single mom, this is what I craved. Even sadness and emptiness…to be thankful for this. Though a heavy burden to carry, it makes me soft, sensitive, creative…it makes me feel strangely alive?
The mundane is beautiful if I stop to look at it.
The mundane is comfort, trustworthy, safe. It’s good to not always have mundane but on a whole, I think comfort, trustworthiness and safety are pretty beautiful things.
Can you see the bread in your life? Does it feel like the only thing being served in your life? Can you see the occasional bun? I think sometimes we really need to choose to stop and look.
How about starting today with me?
Grab a plate and let’s have some buns ‘n junk today.