Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
Sacrament of Holy Qurbana: Celebration of Salvation
1 Corinthians 10:15-17
v17 “Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body, for we all share the one loaf.”
Since the pandemic, most of us have not been able to have our “typical” Sunday morning services. As the service starts, you have your Ammachis and Appachans getting in nice and early to get those “good” seats or “their” seat, where your young families are struggling to get their toddlers to get inside the church, and where the Sunday school students are hanging around trying to prolong their time, before they have to commit to the 2.5 hour service. And so the Holy Qurbana service starts, with a diversity in the generations that come to worship, with a diversity in the genders that come to worship, with a diversity in professionals that come to worship, a diversity in the nationalities that come to worship, and so on. Just within the congregation itself, even as a predominately Malayalee congregation, there is a great deal of diversity in the participants that come together to worship. However, on any “typical” Sunday morning, one can take joy that in multiple churches across the country around that time, are worshiping our God, all in different ways, with different languages, with different songs, and with different praises. And how beautiful is that! Because even with all the diversity, we get to come together and use that diversity to further glorify our God. We all get to have the blessing, opportunity and grace to participate as one body in sharing the one loaf. And so let’s take another step back. As we come to celebrate as one body, we should also remember to share in each other’s struggles and sufferings. We come to celebrate on a weekly basis, because before and after that celebration we were and are struggling together as the body of Christ against multiple difficulties. As we come to celebrate the greatest sacrifice of love that has been made, have we taken the time to also bear with one another’s burden? As we celebrate together, side by side before the altar, have you been able to bear with the burden of the one that is sitting right by you? It may be your sibling, it may be your old Sunday school teacher, it may be the uncle or aunty you occasionally say hello to, or it may be the Sunday school student that you constantly shush during service. Perhaps you may know their struggle but have you shared in their struggle? So when we finally get the chance to come together again to celebrate the Holy Qurbana side by side, check in and see, have you shared the burden of the one sitting right by you?
Lord, help us to recognize the differences among ourselves and rather than to quarrel and feud those differences, help us to accept those differences in such a way, that when we come together, through those differences we can hold, we can glorify you all the more.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
“First is the beauty and power of praise that comes from unity in diversity that is greater than that which comes from unity alone.” – John Piper
Sherine Thomas, Long Island Mar Thoma Church, NY
Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church