Loving the Broken Body of Christ

I had written recently about a bit of squeamishness about the crucifix… it bearing the body of Christ……. While God’s mercy and grace expressed in Christ’s willingness to die for my sins is a measure of his love and a cause of great gratitude by me, it is the victory of the resurrected and ascended Christ and his Holy Spirit present to me now that is the power in which I live.

Recently I was reminded of that through someone’s prayer to “ love the broken body of Christ”.

I admit I felt a bit of a wince at the thought of loving his broken body until I thought it through ….Jesus said, “THIS bread is my body, broken for you. As often as you do this, do so in remembrance of me…… “ ….not reenact the crucifixion…. but be fed, be nourished, and recall that he told his disciples to feed the thousands ( they brought what they could find and he made it more than enough) and later he told Peter to feed his sheep….. and in doing so we will be honoring and remembering him. Remember his ministry to the world.  “THIS wine is my blood poured out for you, as often as you do this, do so in remembrance of me.” Share my life with one another…. often, (daily?)…. every time you are blessed to be fed, receive refreshment and remember  me. Remember I am present with you as you feed and are fed, as you refresh and are refreshed. This is an act of invitation into participation in the life and ministry of Christ, individually and in community…. It is beautiful and holy. Wesley urged regular participation in the sacrament, every time one could, preferably daily, as our bodies require frequent nourishing and refreshing, so does his Body, the church, and HE IS that nourishment and refreshing by the presence and  power of his Holy Spirit which we receive in submitting our own brokenness to service on his behalf. I do love Christ’s broken body…. In all its representations… on the cross, in the sacrament, in the brokenness of a repentant heart, and in the brokenness of his church, wherever his followers find themselves struggling to live into their understanding of his vision for the world already redeemed and being redeemed more perfectly with each tribulation.