Friday, January 27, 2012

Love for the Sacrament

I have been having some really great experiences at church every week. And I am truly blessed to have that opportunity to go each week to partake of the sacrament, feel of the Spirit, learn of the gospel, and most of all be touched by God's love. My love and appreciation for the Sacrament is so much deeper now because I have come to understand it's true meaning and purpose. Another great blessing that I've received since being on my mission.

Recently my companion shared a great analogy with me that helped me to view the sacrament in a totally different perspective. I would always open my scriptures to the twenty-second chapter of Luke and read of Christ instituting the sacrament, His suffering in the Garden of Gethsemane, and His betrayal. What he went through is incomprehensible, but the selfless act of love He did for us brings so much peace and comfort to my heart. When my companion shared her analogy of how when the sacrament is being prepared, the priesthood young men breaking the bread is as if they are breaking the Savior's actual body. The Savior is still sacrificing for us and on our behalf every Sunday during sacrament meeting when the bread and water are being blessed. I went to church that Sunday with this analogy in my mind. As the hymn, "As Now We Take the Sacrament" my heart was filled with compassion to my Savior that I began to cry. The sacrament took on a new meaning to me that day. As I watched the tray go up and down the rows of the members of the Church, I noticed that not everyone approached the sacrament with the same attitude. There were those who seemed to partake of the sacrament just as a matter of routine, but there were many, many who accepted the sacrament with great reverence.

Partaking of the sacrament provides us with a sacred moment in a holy place. We do it in accordance with the commandment the Lord gave us in section 59 of the Doctrine and Covenants: “And that thou mayest more fully keep thyself unspotted from the world, thou shalt go to the house of prayer and offer up thy sacraments upon my holy day” (D&C 59:9). Just as the Savior instructed His disciples to go to an upper room for Him to institute the sacrament, He invites us all to go to church each week to partake of this same blessing. I have come to realize that He did this to get away from the distractions of the world so that we can feel of the spirit and recognize His love for us in the spirit of reverence. The sacrament is one of the most sacred ordinances in the Church. Partaking of the sacrament worthily gives us an opportunity for spiritual growth. When we partake of the sacrament worthily, we remember the sacrifice of our Lord and Savior, that He gave up His life and took upon Himself the sins of the world that we may have the blessing of immortality. May we instill in us an increased reverence for the Sabbath, especially in partaking of the sacrament. May we come to fully realize the special blessing that comes from being able to partake of the sacrament and its significance in our lives. May we always remember Him and keep His commandments, which He has given us to fulfill the purpose of life and the hope of the eternities that are to come. This is the Lord’s work in which we are engaged. God lives. Jesus is the Christ, the Savior of the world. We’re permitted to be part of this great gospel plan, of which the sacrament is such a vital part. May we accept His invitation and Come Unto Him, and partake of His blessing is my prayer, in Christ's name. Amen.