It’s clear from scripture that we are saved by the blood of Jesus Christ who was broken and crucified for our sins. This is memorialized in the Lord’s Supper where the loaf of bread is broken to help us remember that Christ’s body was broken for us (1). Many believers call this sacrament Holy Communion which has far deeper and much more relational meaning than I ever realized. We’re all aware that we are washed clean by the blood of Jesus but for some reason we don’t spend as much time considering Christ’s body broken for us.
Ann Voskamp in her marvelous book “The Broken Way” explains that true communion between individuals only occurs when each of the participants shares their brokenness. Only then can true friendship begin.
Perhaps that’s one of the secrets behind the success of 12 step programs where each participant shares their brokenness with the group enabling them to connect and bond on a much deeper, spiritual level. And, taking their individual brokenness to the next level through their working the steps which assist in identifying and confronting the issues that drove them to use the substance they used to assuage their pain. This is where true healing and communion begins as we identify and share our brokenness with one another.
When we take Communion we are remembering Christ being broken and sacrificed for all our sins. And when we communion with one another we are sharing our brokenness with each other while remembering Christ’s brokenness which binds us together like “a cord of three strands” (2).
Scripture encourages us to confess our sins to each other not to embarrass us or give others something to hold over our heads, but to share the load of our brokenness with Christ and each other so that true communion can take place in the spiritual and earthly realms (3). Isn’t that also why we’re commanded to resolve any conflict with others before going to the alter (4)?
Perhaps we Christians need to spend more time together confessing our sins and sharing our brokenness and less time adjusting our halos.
1. First Corinthians 11:23-26 (KJV)
2. Ecclesiastes 4:12
3. James 5:16
4. Matthew 5:23