Our practice of weekly observing of the Lord’s Supper might jostle loose a few reactions. In talking with many new families, reactions have ranged from deep gratitude for this practice (as they’ve come from churches where the Supper was only taken whenever there’s a fifth Sunday of the month). Others might react, however, with asking whether this weekly observance turns the Supper into a mindless tradition of men. I hasten to add this is a concern we share.
This concern, however, can arise from a common misconception not only about “right partaking” of the Supper, but also human wiring. First, weekly Supper observance is no more a “tradition of man” than a husband’s daily goodbye kiss to his wife before heading to work. Frequency doesn’t mean thoughtlessly or meaninglessly. Any man who’s had a long business trip knows the gnawing ache just to plant a kiss on his wife & bear hug his kids. The pain of his absence reveals the presence of his affections.
Another angle on this is that the broad Evangelical approach to the Supper is all about getting into the right frame of mind; perhaps this explains irregularity of the Supper in some circles. If you have to do evangelical Zen to get into the right pietistic headspace just to attain “right partaking,” you aren’t rightly partaking.
Just because something becomes habitual, doesn’t mean it’s drained of all enjoyment. Muscle memory enables the musician to come to deeper enjoyment of the music. Regularity doesn’t impede right partaking, it fosters it. We’re wired to form habits. The danger, then, in weekly observance of the Supper isn’t in frequency, it’s in the adverbs. Is the Supper taken faithfully, or unfaithfully?
A weekly Supper is intended to form the habit of faithfulness. Faithfulness isn’t discovered in the rare air of mountaintop pietism. It comes from Christ, and So come in faith and welcome to Jesus Christ…