“Damn it Jim, I’m a Doctor not a cook!”
When our little group of believers gather for fellowship we “normally” start with a shared meal. Eating together is an important thing for churches to do. Breaking bread with one another is something deeply human and deeply Spiritual. We gather together to share our blessings both temporal and spiritual and the meal represents how we go about sharing these Divine blessings.
At our time of gathering EVERYone brings a contribution to the meal. Each household is responsible to bring enough food to share with their whole church family. We rarely organize this ahead of time, except perhaps a few phone calls to make sure we are not doubling up on any given dish. Our fellowships take our communion meal so seriously that we honestly refer to ourselves as THE FIRST CHURCH OF MEAT COOKED ON FIRE.
So we sit down and share a big meal. We sit around the table and around the room where we are either side by side or face to face with our fellow eaters. All of this is by intentional choice. Yes, we really want to just hang out and eat with one another. And as we eat the conversations flow in a great number of directions and topics. Yes, exactly just like we are gathering with our extended family. Because we totally recognize that we really are HIS family and we belong to one another.
After the meal we all clean up and after that we reassemble for more focused time of sharing, singing and prayer. Guess what? We treat this time together just like we went about preparing for the common meal. EVERYONE has a contribution. We all share in turn as The Spirit leads us. Then we simply eat until we are full. It is that simple! It is that real!
The second chapter of Acts talks about the early church coming together to share teaching, fellowship, eating and prayer. It says they broke bread in their homes and “ate together with glad and sincere hearts.” Should we in the 21’st century settle for anything more or less? GOD has not changed! And YES it really is that simple. Every member brings their portion to share and it always works and Jesus is always glorified in our midst.