Christ Has Died. Christ Has Risen. Christ Will Come Again.
These are the words I repeat with our community of Christ-followers each time we gather to observe communion. They have come to mean something endearing to me, more than ritual recitation. They echo what has happened, and they speak to what will happen.
This Thursday my mind dwells on the last supper our Lord had with His disciples and the events that took place Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday so long ago.
I grew up hearing the stories of faith from my family and another community of believers. Friday morning coffee brought the story of Jesus’ suffering. How He’d been awake all night and endured beatings and humiliation.
Noon and 3:00 are hours that still bring pause. A time to reflect on the cross. The veil that was torn in two from top to bottom. The words, “It is finished.”
Growing up, my family had dinner together on Friday night, and afterwards, we ate crackers and drank grape juice from a communion set passed down from my great-grandfather, a military chaplain. My parents wanted their children to understand in a tangible way what really happened. I didn’t always get it. Sometimes it felt a little forced or rote. But I’m glad we did it.
Today, I wonder if I’m doing enough to help my children understand the story of their faith. They rattle off verses with familiarity. And I pray for their hearts to comprehend the truth they are learning.
All over the world, people will come together this weekend to remember the crucifixion and the resurrection. The expressions of faith will be different. Maybe they’ll participate in the Stations of the Cross. Maybe they’ll eat a Passover meal together. Maybe they’ll take communion together. Maybe remembering will be a personal time of reflection. But my prayer is that our hearts will be impacted as we live the truth, “that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures, and that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day according to the scriptures,” (1 Corinthians 15:3-4).
As we assent to the gospel message, may we “set Christ apart as Lord in your hearts and always be ready to give an answer to anyone who asks about the hope you possess,” (1 Peter 3:15).
Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.