PASTOR MATTHEW’S REFLECTIONS:
In the Hebrew text for today we hear the prophet Joshua demanding of the people "choose whom you will serve!" I think of the Bob Dylan song "Gotta Serve Somebody"
You may be a preacher with your spiritual pride
You may be a city councilman taking bribes on the side
You may be workin' in a barbershop, you may know how to cut hair
You may be somebody's mistress, may be somebody's heir
But you're gonna have to serve somebody, yes
You're gonna have to serve somebody
Well, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord
But you're gonna have to serve somebody
The truth of these words plays out every moment of every day for the people of God as the myriad of choices we make every moment of our lives bring us into communion with God or find us in contention with God. One of the ways we stay in communion with our God is in the very gift of communion itself, the Eucharist. As Lutherans, we profess the truth of a real presence, in with and under the bread and wine when they are consecrated, with the words of institution in the midst of the people of God.
The gospel text for today is more of the discourse on the Bread of Life and Jesus is again exhorting us to take into ourselves the very substance of His body and blood as nourishment for the work of the kingdom and assurance of our value to our Creator.
I long to celebrate this life-giving sacrament with you all again soon but as we wait for that joyful reunion/communion let us ever be mindful of whom we serve and why we serve.