The Last Supper (you can’t beat a good dinner party)

A recent dinner party with people we love

DINNER: In a world full with a multiplicity of entertainment options designed to distract us and cater to our ever-shortening attention spans, in my opinion there’s still nothing that quite compares with an unhurried dinner party with friends.

Every occasion is unique, but there are some common elements that always seem to be at play when a dinner party moves from the pleasant to the remarkable and memorable:

  • Good food…
  • Great conversation…
  • Jesus…
  • Unhurried time…
  • Faith…
  • Love…
  • Poignancy…
  • Bread and Wine…
  • Prayer

The Upper Room, Jerusalem

Thursday of Holy Week, 2,000 years ago in Jerusalem, Jesus organized an unforgettable dinner party with his friends. Events were moving toward the inevitable conclusion of the cross; and – even though they had enjoyed a similar event on the eve of Palm Sunday’s Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem – Jesus had some important ideas to talk about.

Their time together was drawing to a close, and Jesus wanted to go over the highlights one more time.

I give you a new commandment… by this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another…

I am the way, the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father except through me…

Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives…

If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love…

You will have pain, but your pain will turn into joy…

I have said this to you so that in me you may have peace. In the world you face persecution. But take courage; I have conquered the world!

The glory that you have given me I have given them, so that they may be one, as we are one…

Righteous Father, the world does not know you, but I know you; and these know that you have sent me. I made your name known to them, and I will make it known, so that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them…

Sharing Christ and one-another in Athens...

JUST LIKE BEING THERE: I’ve often thought about how cool it would have been to be there, with Jesus at this epic dinner party, enjoying intimate conversation in the presence of the Master himself.

But, fact is, I enjoy such life-charged, faith-enhancing experiences every time I break bread with friends in the presence of Jesus. All of the elements are present, and most especially the very real inclusion of the Lord himself.

This evening, seated at round tables for 8-10 people, our church will celebrate “The Lord’s Supper” at the end of a regular meal together in the fellowship hall. And Jesus will be there, as he is whenever we gather together in his name.

But Jesus doesn’t show up as an ethereal or ghost-like presence or memory; no, Jesus said “The glory that you have given me I have given them….” and “The love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them….”

Communion around the Thanksgiving table

Jesus shows up because Jesus is God, and God simply is. But Jesus also shows up in and through my friends. Jesus lives in and through believers.

When I have a dinner party with my friends, I am on Holy Ground.

“For as often as you eat this bread, and drink this cup….”

– DEREK



Categories: The Church, The Life That Truly is Life, The Life-Charged Life, The Story

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